The O.C. may have introduced us to one of our favorite friend groups in the form of Seth (Adam Brody), Summer (Rachel Bilson), Marissa (Mischa Barton), and Ryan (Ben McKenzie), but it turns out, one of the four wasn’t originally meant to be such a big part of the show.
In an interview with MTV News at this year’s ATX Television Festival in Austin, series creator Josh Schwartz revealed that actress Rachel Bilson was only ever meant to be a guest star. This is also why Summer doesn’t have very many lines in the first episode of the series.
Despite the fact that Schwartz admits the dialogue they gave Summer in the pilot wasn’t much to work with, the creator says Bilson managed to win them over regardless.
“She was so winning and adorable and brought such a good energy to the show,” Schwartz told MTV.
Even so, Bilson’s Summer didn’t solidify herself as a mainstay in the series until four episodes in. Fans of The O.C. will undoubtedly remember this episode as the one where the crew heads off to Tijuana.
“We wrote [Bilson] a bunch of stuff to do that was in the realm of Hepburn-and-Tracy-sparring dialogue with Seth, and she was able to match him dig for dig and joke for joke,” recalled Schwartz. “That’s when we knew that this girl was sticking with us for the rest of the ride.”
The O.C. without Summer? We can’t even imagine such a thing and we’re sure glad to know Schwartz and the rest of the show runners felt the same way!