Mischa Barton Clarifies 'The Hills' Casting Shake-Up and Season 2 Rumors (Exclusive)
By Rachel McRady
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Mischa Barton is used to being caught up in the drama. The 34-year-old O.C. actress appeared on season one of The Hills: New Beginnings, but when the show started filming its second season, rumors started swirling that she might not be coming back. Instead, it was speculated that Caroline D'Amore, an entertainer who also serves as the CEO of Pizza Girl, was her replacement.
Barton originally mocked the reporting, specifically calling out an Us Weekly article on social media, but recently opened up to ET's Katie Krause about the confusion surrounding her possible return to the series and D'Amore's involvement.
"The drama," she joked when asked about the rumors. "Um, yeah, I don't know... There's just that report you're talking about and that had to do more with bullying, and that's, like, something I don't stand up for and so I was wrong. I had to apologize to Us Weekly."
Barton admitted that D'Amore "was maybe gonna come on the show," and that the news made her feel "like I had egg on my face." The actress claimed MTV executives did not tell her about the possible casting, and further implied that she has a history with D'Amore.
"It's more in the past. This was drama from over the years and sort of, stuff that didn't get properly resolved when it should have, and so that stuff is sort of open wounds," she said, adding of D'Amore's casting that she "didn't know that was even a possibility."
"I seem meek all the time, but there are things that do get me very angry," she continued. "So I don't care if it's controversial, it's just the way I felt."
"[The] show started right before a pandemic, and I think it'll be interesting to see if everyone's resolved any of their s**t and ready to deal with it face-on, truly, this time around, and maybe be as open and honest as they can be, and like maybe there's some stuff that still needs to be talked about," Barton said of this season's drama.
Barton added that she stays in touch "with some of the girls," but that they're all "just doing our own thing."
"Yeah, let's see when they can get production back up and going and see what happens with that and who's gonna be on it," she said of the season two casting.
Barton called being on the show after years of dramatic television "a learning curve" and noted that she was "grateful" for a break.
Barton also revealed that she did have a boyfriend during season one of The Hills.
"We filmed a little bit, but it's just like -- not everybody is like meant for this kind of stuff, ya know? Like not all these relationships in reality TV are meant to be on camera," she said, adding that she's no longer together with the unnamed boyfriend. "I think that was one of the hurdles too with me is that I put a lot of energy into that, which I found very draining."
Barton is now preparing for the release of her new comedy thriller, Spree, which co-stars Joe Keery, David Arquette, Sasheer Zamata, Frankie Grande and Vanderpump Rules star Lala Kent, who she befriended while on set.
"Weirdly Lala and I connected in a way I never thought we could 'cause she's from reality TV," she revealed. "And she was actually able to give me some interesting insight into things and talk to me about it while we were on set, so we actually had a great time during our down time."
Spree will be available in theaters, VOD and digital Friday, Aug. 14.