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[04/11/09 - 07:00 PM]
Live at the Paley Festival: The CW's "90210"
By Brian Ford Sullivan (TFC)

Please note: As a courtesy, please do not reproduce these comments to newsgroups, forums or other online places. Links only please.

[EDITOR'S NOTE: As always, due to the Paley Festival's policy of not allowing electronic devices during the panels, I won't be blogging the event "live." Plus, I don't want to be the douche with a laptop clicking away when everyone's trying to enjoy the show. In any case, look for my handwritten blog - how 20th century - to be transcribed and appear around 11:00 PM PT each night. And if I'm feeling adventurous, you might get a few tweets from the after parties.]

7:00 PM - Tonight's legacy clip is brought to you by the original "90210."

7:10 PM - The Paley Center's Craig Hitchcock notes that they've moved tonight's festivities from 90028 (The Cinerama Dome) to 90210 (The Paley Center). Cute. Not cute: learning about this fact in 90028.

7:12 PM - Craig brings out our host for the evening, the lovely Diablo Cody. She notes that after seeing that vintage "90210" clip, she now misses those body suits that snap at the crotch.

7:15 PM - Tonight's screening is of the upcoming April 21 installment "Between A Sign And A Hard Place," directed by co-star Rob Estes. Not really a spoiler but if you've ever wanted to see Rob Estes sing along with a Big Mouth Billy Bass, you might want to set your TiVo.

7:57 PM - Diablo is back to intro tonight's panel: Matt Lanter! Jessica Stroup! Ryan Eggold! Shenae Grimes! Rob Estes! Rebecca Rand Kirshner Sinclair!

8:00 PM - Diablo asks what about the original "90210" does the current "90210" hope to carry on. Rebecca quips, "There was another '90210' before this one?" She goes on to say "what I really admired about the first show was how much it somehow spoke to the zeitgeist... for whatever reason those characters were so vivid and so real to people no matter what crazy world they were in and experienced stuff they went through. And so I'd like to try to emulate that."

8:01 PM - Rebecca on what brought about giving Silver a bipolar disorder: "I have some friends who are bipolar and I haven't seen it on TV... that probably inspired me in that I felt like... deep down that's probably what inspired me. And then it felt like whatever in this era, that was the kind of thing that was relevant to people, that people were starting to talk about."

8:03 PM - Jessica follows up with: "That is also a personal subject for me, I have a lot of people around me that are dealing with that issue. But I wanted a challenge, I wanted a real storyline, something that was for me just different and something I've never tried before." She goes on to note she stole Rebecca's "Bipolar for Dummies" book for research.

8:05 PM - Rebecca on the show's teen pregnancy: "In the news there was this sense of what is it like to be pregnant now where 20 years ago it would have been a deeply shameful thing where you'd get sent away. Now there's different ideas... there's something almost applauded in our society for young women to procreate and yet it's demonized, so I guess it's interesting to me... we just wanted to recreate 'Juno.'"

8:06 PM - Diablo notes "there actually was a pregnancy in the original '90210' except it was Andrea, booorrrinnng!"

8:07 PM - Diablo asks if we'll ever see David Silver or Dylan on the new show. "I think that would be great," Rebecca says. "But I also want to let these kids be the next generation of stars." You can translate that how you'd like.

8:10 PM - Shenae on her character's journey this season: "I think it's been a struggle, I think it's been a roller coaster. There are times when she's straying from her roots a little bit more. And I think there are times, usually when she's in trouble, where she comes back to those roots... she kind of stumbles back into the values she was raised with."

8:11 PM - Jessica mentions Andrea, but pronounces it like "Andraya." This prompts Diablo to correct her, adding "it was really important to her." Jessica goes on to note that "it was phenomenal" to have Silver's backstory already established by the original "90210."

8:12 PM - Rob on his directing experience on the show: "Directing definitely gives you a different perspective, the inner workings of things. And sitting with Rebecca... seeing her thoughts on where she wants to take the show and the pacing. I don't know, I think you get an understanding of what the whole is striving to be and that was pretty cool for me."

8:14 PM - Diablo asks why the parents are so much cooler on the new show than the old one. "I started to channel a little bit of my own father," Rebecca notes. "Which is maybe not cool but a little goofy, which I think is quite fun."

8:15 PM - Rob adds: "For me it's one of the hardest roles on the show because you want good storylines but at the same time you are this kind of the rock, the foundation of... if Deb and Harry ever go too far off, what does that mean? But, you know, in the final episode [of the season, look away now if you don't want to know] Rebecca found a way to blow it up some and it was so fun. And it seems like it will go down that road a little more."

8:16 PM - Matt on what lurks behind his bad boy character: "The cool thing about Liam that I know so far, because I haven't been around very long, is he's definitely an intelligent guy with a lot of depth that I really think we're going to get into and definitely, hopefully do. Because we're kind of getting into it with the last few episodes of the season. He's got some troubles... it's definitely a lot of fun."

8:18 PM - Diablo calls Ryan's character "a millennial Mrs. Teasley" adding, "you don't often see the teacher on a high school show have an exciting..." Ryan interrupts, "getting jiggy with it. I actually put in my contract a quota of women I would sleep with in the first season." Matt quips, "Mine too."

8:20 PM - The cast is asked about their favorite scenes so far. Rob says his hasn't aired yet, but (again, look away if you don't want to know) "it happens in a hospital." Jessica and Shenae's: the last scene in the pilot where they run into the water. "Me and Dustin [Milligan] looked at each other doing that scene like, 'We're from Canada, man. Where are we?'" Shenae notes. Ryan's: "Probably making out with Jennie [Garth]." Matt's: drag racing with AnnaLynne.

8:24 PM - On the differences between "90210" and their own high school experiences: Rob jokes he wasn't a father of two then and Ryan quips his pregnancy went a lot differently than Adrianna's.

8:26 PM - Diablo asks about how everyone is dealing with their newfound fame. "For me this has been a whirlwind year for sure," Jessica reveals. "But also so thankful for everything's happened and learned who my true friends are." Shenae adds that Jessica had to literally drag her down the green carpet at the CW upfront because she was so nervous. "I was shell-shocked, completely."

8:29 PM - Audience Q&A time.

8:32 PM - Rebecca on why Dustin Milligan won't be returning next season: "I will say that I think Dustin Milligan is a really, really good actor and an excellent person. But at the end of the year... I encouraged the actors to come back to me with their thoughts about scripts and he was so smart and so perceptive, I was really blown away. I think he's great. The character for me as I'm sort of going forward... I was sort of stumped by that character. I didn't feel like there was this sort of longevity in that character that I wanted. And so it was a real loss, Dustin's amazing, genuinely a real talent with incredible charm and a really great person. He will not sort of be around for the long haul. That's the trick of it."

8:34 PM - Someone asks which character, besides their own, intrigues them the most - Matt: Silver. Jessica: Annie and Dixon. Shenae: Silver and Dixon. Rob: Debbie ("but that would be weird, kissing myself") and Dixon. Ryan: Navid.

8:36 PM - The cast notes they often get together to watch the show: "We laugh a lot," Jessica notes. "We make fun of each other." Ryan says there should be an extra on the DVD to track his various hairstyles this season.

8:37 PM - Shenae on after seeing tonight's episode, who's the better foosball player in real life, her or AnnaLynne: "AnnaLynne kicked my ass. She is a scary girl. In competition she's in it to win it." Rob adds, "The majority of those shots of the balls going in - it's the grips." Shenae concedes, "Our aim wasn't the greatest."

8:40 PM - Ryan on being an actor: "I just realized [as a teenager] it was something I had to do. And... I'd either be homeless or an actor. Hopefully I won't be homeless."

8:42 PM - Diablo on playing herself on the show: "I was actually terrified, I've always had a tremendous amount of respect for actors because I cannot act. I was playing myself, it was incredibly challenging."

8:46 PM - Rebecca on where she sees the show going: "I think that the magic of the first season is that you've gotten to see these friendships and how they're related to each other. I would love to get more into that. But it's a balance of finding how they're both different, we've got a diverse group of kids and yet, what are their bonds? I think it's those bonds that make you really appreciate them. I think that's part of the madness of the first sort of incarnation of the show."

8:48 PM - A fan points out how David Silver's radio station from the old show mirrors Silver's blog in the current show. This blows Diablo's mind.

8:51 PM - And that's a wrap until Monday!





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