You know you love her! Leighton Meester may be best known for her role as Blair Waldorf on Gossip Girl, but the Texas native’s resumé is a lot more impressive than that. In fact, Leighton’s first acting gig dates all the way back to a 1999 episode of Law & Order.
From there, she snagged a series of consistent roles leading up to Gossip Girl in 2007. Leighton played the Upper East Side villain for 121 episodes until the CW series came to an end in 2012.
Thanks to the popularity of streaming services like Netflix and HBO Max, a whole new generation of viewers are falling in love with Blair Waldorf (and of course, Leighton) all over again. After all, she may have not been the protagonist of the show, but she certainly made it worth watching.
In 2018, Leighton, who is now married to The OC‘s Adam Brody, opened up about her experiences on the teen drama. “I was young when I started Gossip Girl. A lot more people were suddenly around, and I was being looked at,” she told Porter magazine at the time.
“If you don’t have the right perspective, you could definitely be confused by people being that nice to you or judging you for behavior that’s typical of a 20-, 21-year-old … making mistakes but having to make them very publicly,” Leighton continued. “I’m not haunted by that time, but it’s been interesting and helpful for me to look at it and examine it as an adult and go, ‘I don’t know if it was the healthiest environment.’”
Ultimately, the proud parent, who shares two children with Adam, “wouldn’t trade” her role on Gossip Girl “for anything,” but that doesn’t mean Leighton is itching for a reunion anytime soon. “It’s sort of a time capsule,” she expressed. “A lot of the questions that come from it are: ‘Do you miss it?’ ‘Did you love what you wore?’ And I understand that, but — and I say this with nothing but love — it is like saying, ‘High school was an amazing time for you, do you wish you could go back?’ And the truth is, it was so special and such a unique, amazing experience, but no, I wouldn’t wanna go back to it — I was a kid!”
Thankfully, Leighton has gone on to do plenty of incredible things since then!
Scroll through the gallery below to see Leighton Meester’s transformation over the years.
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