Showrunner Joshua Safran, who was also an executive producer and writer on the original, said that the new episodes will include cameos from people who were Upper East Siders the first time around — just not series regulars like Leighton Meester (Blair Waldorf) or Blake Lively (Serena van der Woodsen).
“We made a decision early on — and I was nervous about this decision, but definitely came to believe it was right — that the audience would never accept these characters if they were in the shadow of the original characters,” Safran, 47, told The Daily Beast in an interview published on Thursday, July 1. “If Blair showed up for two scenes, you’d say, ‘I want more Blair.’ The decision was: Let’s get season 1 under our belt, and should we get season 2, we’ll have the chance to bring in cameos that are more than glorified cameos but actually give them story lines.”
The surprise appearances, he explained, would be from characters who were not the main focus of the original storylines. “There are some cameos in season 1 from people on the original show, but not the series regulars,” he shared.
That rules out Blair, Serena, Dan Humphrey (Penn Badgley), Nate Archibald (Chace Crawford), Chuck Bass (Ed Westwick), Jenny Humphrey (Taylor Momsen), Vanessa Abrams (Jessica Szohr), Serena’s mom (Kelly Rutherford) and Dan’s dad (Matthew Settle), but it does leave room for plenty of supporting characters, including Blair’s trusty maid, Dorota (Zuzanna Szadkowski) and Blair’s mom, Eleanor Waldorf (Margaret Colin).
Then there’s Georgina Sparks (Michelle Trachtenberg), who looms large in the memory of both fans and Constance Billard alums but was actually only in 28 episodes of the original series, which ran from 2007 to 2012.
Sebastian Stan, who played ne’er-do-well Carter Baizen, is another possibility, but given his various Marvel commitments, he seems less likely to pop up in his old St. Jude’s stomping grounds.
“Definitely not!” Safran said when asked if they might appear again. “The cameos here are more about the world that they enter, not who goes to them. In 2007, the kids weren’t famous like kids are famous now. Gossip Girl was talking about them, but if they went to a party, Jared and Ivanka were there — it wasn’t that Jared and Ivanka were there to see them. The world has shifted a little bit to where if Julien goes to a party, there are celebrities that are going to want to be at that party because Julien is there.”