Did Mark-Paul Gosselaar Really Date His 'Saved By the Bell' Co-Stars? The Set Sounds Just Like High School
There is no denying that one of our favorite '90s heartthrobs Zack Morris was (and let's face it, still is) a total hottie, but did Mark-Paul Gosselaar really date his Saved By the Bell co-stars? While he's since ditched his signature frosted tips and moved on to more adult fare like TNT's Franklin & Bash, Lifetime's saucy new movie The Unauthorized Saved By the Bell Story, premiering on Monday, Sept. 1, does beg the question: how accurate are all of the hookups the teasers refer to (not to mention those outlined by Dustin Diamond's unauthorized book Behind the Bell)?
Gosselaar took to HuffPost Live with Bash co-star Breckin Meyer to go on record regarding Diamond's "negativity" about that era of their lives. Gosselaar mentions that he was never consulted alongside his other castmates, with Meyer (a '90s teen/child actor himself, appearing in films such as Clueless) jumping in to say that Diamond seems like nothing more than a huge douche, basically.
While the sinister undercurrent of the book and movie may be falsified, what about the romantic claims? Was Diamond, aka Screech, the scorned teen he portrays himself as, with Gosselaar occupying all of the female costars' attentions?
The scorn part may be overkill, but it definitely didn't differ too much from actual high school. The cast was fairly open in a 2009 reunion in People (which very notably omitted Dustin Diamond, even cropping him out of original cast photos from the series). Gosselaar admits to dating each of his female co-stars at different times, calling the ever changing couplings and alliances "incestuous."
He describes the interactions as "very high school" with people getting mad at each other for supposed slights, and changing who they were friends with from week to week. Gosselaar continues:
Sometimes the girls would gang up on the guys. Tiffani and Elizabeth would hate me, and then they'd hate Lark because Lark was talking to me, and Mario was supposed to side with someone. All that stuff you did in high school, like, 'How could you talk to him?'
While Diamond might be hell-bent on painting them as some sort of petty evil showbiz brats, that sounds like pretty normal teenage behavior to me, down to the "I can't believe you would talk to so-and-so" injustices, which are totally a big deal between the ages of 13 and 16. Despite the negative light Diamond paints on the time period, Gosselaar has no bad blood with his SBTB "exes," remarking in the Washington Post that everyone is still friends. Or rather, "pretty much" everyone. The 2008 interview was conducted before the release of Diamond's book, so the star, who was at the time appearing on NYPD Blue, is still fairly diplomatic. He doesn't name names of who that "pretty much" doesn't include, and seems fairly optimistic about the upcoming book, quoted as saying "I think it's going to be interesting to see what he comes up with."
That part did end up being true: it certainly is all interesting, whether it's true, exaggerated, or somewhere in between. Since Diamond himself is starting to have pangs of regret with the book and movie, maybe everyone will finally bury the hatchet enough so we can get a real Zack Attack reunion?