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Autumn Reeser Had No Idea Former ‘The O.C.’ Costar Mischa Barton Was on ‘The Hills’: ‘I Don’t Pay Attention’ (Exclusive)

Out of the loop? Autumn Reeser confessed that she was completely unaware that Mischa Barton, her former The O.C. costar, had transitioned careers from actress to reality television star upon joining MTV’s The Hills revival series.

Related: Where Is 'The O.C.' Cast Now?

Autumn Reeser and Mischa Barton
Autumn Reeser and Mischa Barton. Paul Archuleta/Getty Images; Us Weekly

Reeser, 38, admitted that she does not “watch anything” on television, but she was especially stunned to learn Barton had secured a role on The Hills: New Beginnings.

“She’s on The Hills? Isn’t it a reality show?” Reeser asked. The former No Ordinary Family star then revealed that she doesn’t “pay attention” to anything in the media, but she regarded the addition of the 33-year-old Beautiful Life: TBL alum to be “exciting.”

Related: The O.C. Cast: Then and Now

Reeser first joined The O.C. as Taylor Townsend during season 3 of the FOX series’ run. The season was also Barton’s last turn as Marissa Cooper, as her character was killed off in the finale. Reeser’s Taylor would later replace the newbie reality star’s character as Ryan Atwood’s (Ben McKenzie) love interest in the show’s fourth and final season.

Reeser revealed that she no longer keeps in touch with Barton. However, she shared that not all of her O.C. friendships are forever gone.

“I see people every now and then at different things,” Reeser shared with Us at the Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Summer 2019 TCA Press Tour Event. “Ben [McKenzie] and Rachel [Bilson] and a bunch of us met up at the OC Musical at the Montalban. But you know, what’s nice about Hallmark is I get to see so many people I work with regularly twice a year. It’s very much a family. Very warm.”

Related: ‘The Hills’ Most Memorable Moments

Barton’s casting on The Hills was announced in October 2018. She joined model-actor Brandon Lee, the son of Pamela Anderson and rocker Tommy Lee, as the reality show’s newest additions.

Before its June 24 premiere, original member Heidi Montag shared her initial thoughts about having Barton become a series regular.

“I think it was a little frustrating for me at first, because, like, we’ve put our whole lives into this show before and after, so to have someone come in and, like, be so reserved was a little bit frustrating,” Montag, 32, told Us earlier that month. “I don’t think it was intentional, I think that is, like, how she is, and she’s just a little more closed and needed a little more time to open [up].”

Unlike Montag, Whitney Port gushed to Us in June about the actress’ casting. She additionally revealed her excitement about “getting my first text” from Barton.

“I was really excited because I love The O.C.,” Port, 34, told Us. “I was like, this will be really cool. I think so many people don’t really know what’s happening in her life right now and 10 years ago, everybody did. So, I think people will be really interested to see what’s actually going on.”

The Hills: New Beginnings airs on MTV Mondays at 10 p.m. ET.

With reporting by Amanda Champagne

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