'Gossip Girl' Boss Says HBO Max Series Won't Be as 'Button-Pushing' as 'Euphoria'

Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage shared more details on the upcoming reboot.

More details are coming out about HBO Max's Gossip Girl reboot -- and if there's any indication, the next generation of Upper East Siders will be getting away with a whole lot more

WarnerMedia's upcoming streaming service gave a straight-to-series order in July for a new Gossip Girl series with original executive producers Josh Schwartz, Stephanie Savage and Josh Safran, who served as showrunner for the final seasons, all returning.

With Gossip Girl 2.0 not beholden to traditional broadcast standards, Schwartz shared that the series will likely be freer and more risque in its storytelling.

"We're excited about being able to tell a different version of the story and there are different levels of restriction. With streaming, there are fewer episodes so how you unpack those stories or how you tell those stories can differ from the broadcast model. Obviously we want it all to come out of character that feels organic to the show," Schwartz told a small group of reporters, including ET, after the Nancy Drew session on Sunday at the Television Critics Association summer press tour. 

"It won't feel button-pushing just for the sake of being able to do it. Maybe a couple of s***s we'll throw in there just 'cause we can," he quipped. "You don't ever want it to feel gratuitous or something that you're doing just because. Luckily, we'll be airing post-Euphoria so anything we do will seem tame by comparison. I don't think we'll be that controversial."

With the underlying central mystery of the new iteration of Gossip Girl no longer reliant on the identity of the all-knowing gossip maven, a hook of the original series, Savage shared why they will be moving away from that in the reboot.

"Who Gossip Girl wasn't a big mystery of the show. We talked a lot at the end about do we even reveal this or do we just keep this something that people have their own theories about, and so I think not having that as a story driver isn't an issue," Savage said.

Schwartz added, "It didn't drive story for many seasons of the show." 

According to the official logline for the HBO Max reboot, eight years after the original website went dark, a new generation of New York private school teens are introduced to the social surveillance of Gossip Girl. The prestige series will address just how much social media -- and the landscape of New York itself -- has changed in the intervening years.

Conversations have been had with HBO Max about the roll-out plan for the series, but Savage stayed mum about whether it will be a weekly or a binge model. 

Schwartz echoed his previous comments on whether the original stars have been approached to reprise their characters, saying that the offers are out to core cast members such as Blake Lively, Leighton Meester, Penn Badgley, Chace Crawford and Ed Westwick.

Schwartz also seemed hopeful that Kristen Bell, who narrated the original series, could possibly return in the same capacity. "Until we know that, I can't even imagine anyone else doing that," he said.

As for whether The O.C. could be revived in any significant way in the near future, Schwartz seemed to nip the idea in the bud. 

"That was brought up. At one point we were asked to do a return to The O.C. or see those kids grown up," he explained. "To us, that was a very singular story. We felt like we completed that tale by the end. Gossip Girl, because it's sort of the franchise at the center of it -- this idea of this ubiquitous, all-seeing technology that felt like it had the opportunity to revisit it for a new generation as that technology has advanced and mutated." 


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