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The Surprising Way Kristen Bell Made The New Gossip Girl Series Her Own - Exclusive


Kristen Bell is back as Gossip Girl, narrating the scandalous lives of Manhattan's elite in the new reboot series. Whether it's OG fans, new fans, or reboot creator Josh Safran himself, there's one thing that everyone can agree on: a new "Gossip Girl" wouldn't feel real without Bell's snarky narration. However, with a new vibe and a new crew taking Lonely Boy's place as the voice of Manhattan's peskiest gossip queen, Bell is working in a whole new arena (or fashion show, more like).

Luckily, Bell is a pro, leading to brilliant character choices that not even Safran thought of. When you voice a character for six seasons, you're bound to know your character better than anyone — even if she's the omniscient voice of a lonely Brooklyn kid's catfish account (we're looking at you, Dan Humphrey).

During an exclusive interview, Looper spoke to series creator and writer Josh Safran about what it's like working with Bell and the clever character choice she made for the all-new Gossip Girl. Watch out, Upper East Siders. There's a new player in town.

New Gossip Girl, who dis?

Safran had nothing but accolades for the seasoned actress, gushing, "Yeah, I mean, she's the greatest. And I think if she had not wanted to do it, we would have just been like, okay, let's none of us do it." 

Let's face it: There would be no "Gossip Girl" without, well, Gossip Girl. Even though Bell signed onto the project, it's nice for fans to know that nothing would have moved forward without Bell's narration. Safran continued, "Because [the] first day her voiceover came in for the pilot because of the voiceover had been our [post] supervisor, who's great at it, but it's not Kristen Bell. The second you heard Kristen Bell, you're like, 'Oh, there's the show,' right? She is the show." 

So, how exactly did Bell this new iteration of Gossip Girl her own?

"Kristen understood that it wasn't Dan Humphrey writing 'Gossip Girl.' And so, without even me having to talk to her about it, she called me, and she was like, 'I should read this a little differently because it's not Dan,' he added. "And I was like, 'Yes, actually.' That's totally... I wouldn't have thought to give her that direction. She knows the character so much and knows the show so well. And so, it's just awesome. And you can hear it. If you listen, it's actually in there. You can hear the difference."

There certainly is a difference in cadence and a slight vibe adjustment now that Lonely Boy hung up his catty spurs for domestic bliss with Serena. And luckily for fans who hate suspense, the identity of our new Gossip Girl is revealed early on in the reboot pilot. But don't worry, Upper East Sider aficionados: Gossip Girl isn't quite done yet.

Fans can now tune in to the first episode of the "Gossip Girl" reboot, with new episodes airing on Thursdays on HBO Max. And make sure you're up-to-date on the original show, also streaming on HBO Max, because Safran teased a small OG character cameo in episode 5.