Wait, Ashley Olsen As Blair Waldorf?

by Maggie Malach

In the years since its debut, Gossip Girl has become nothing short of a cult classic. From everyone's favorite anti-hero power couple Chuck and Blair to the incredible fashion, this is the show that just keeps on giving. It's hard to imagine the Gossip Girl characters being played by anyone other than the stars who landed the roles, but it turns out the show could have been very different. Ashley Olsen was considered for Blair Waldorf, while Rumer Willis was pitched for the role of Serena van der Woodsen. I'll give you a moment to let that sink in.

CW casting director David Rapaport told Buzzfeed:

"I think the network initially pitched us Ashley Olsen and Rumer Willis for Blair and Serena — I love Rumer, she’s grown into quite an amazing actress and person, but that, to me, was based on protecting the investment of a television show where creatively, these lesser-known girls really captured the essence of the show and carried it for six years."

Of course, as we all know, Blake Lively went on to play Serena and Leighton Meester won the part of the Blair Waldorf. However, had these two actresses originally been cast, things could have been very different. Here's 11 reasons why.

1. Serena And Blair Role Reversal

Blair and Serena are perfect opposites, but different actresses could have flipped the characters' personalities.

2. The Headband Trend Might Not Have Happened

It's hard to picture anyone but Leighton Meester pulling off a headband with such aplomb.

3. Different Jenny Humphrey

One of the first season's plot twists is Jenny's physical similarity to Serena. A different actress playing the socialite means Jenny probably would have been different too.

4. Serena’s Hair

The world is rightfully obsessed with Blake Lively's hair. No other actress could have met this standard.

5. Blair's Style Could Have Been Even More High Fashion

If Blair was played by a fashion designer, her style could have been even more amazing.

6. Serena’s Personality

Lively played Serena with a kooky edge. It's hard to picture another actress achieving this charming balance.

7. Chuck and Blair Might Not Have Been Endgame

Ed Westwick and Leighton Meester's chemistry made Chuck and Blair charming. Another pairing might not have had the vibe to make this coupling work in the long run.

8. Redefine “It” Girl

Serena's "It Girl" status was defined by the way Lively played her. Another actress in the role could have brought to life this title in an entirely different way.

9. Different Cast Of Men

With different women in the lead roles, the men might have been different as well.

10. Mary-Kate Olsen Could Have Guest-Starred

Gossip Girl loves a good plot twist. Who's to say they wouldn't have found some way to give Blair a twin?

11. Blair’s Personality

It's hard to imagine Blair with any other personality, but a different actress might not have been able to balance the character's biting edge and soft side.

Although Willis and Olsen would have been great in the roles, there's no doubt that Meester and Lively are what made them iconic.

Images: Giphy (11); Warner Bros. Television Distribution; Kadeen Griffiths/Bustle