10 Things You Didn’t Know About ‘The O.C.’

The O.C.

FOX had been known to deliver tantalizing storylines on popular nighttime soap operas like Beverly Hills, 90210 and Melrose Place. When both of those series ended, the network was lacking in this genre, which is pretty much non-existent on primetime television today. Then in the summer of 2003 everything changed. A soap opera drama set in Orange County California debuted on the network in August of 2003 and gradually became one the hottest new series of the 2003-2004 television season. That show was The O.C., and it kick-started the careers of Adam Brody, Rachel Bilson, and Benjamin McKenzie. The drama would last for four glorious seasons and would come to a conclusion in February 2007. Here is a list of ten things that you may not know about The O.C. We hope some, if not all, of these facts will surprise you about this series created by Josh Schwartz.

1. No Julie or Summer

When The O.C. was in an early development phase, the characters Julie Cooper and Summer Roberts were only intended to be minor characters. If you watch the first several episodes of the series, you will notice that both Melinda Clarke and Rachel Bilson are billed as guest stars and not included in the awesome opening credits. Once the characters became more integral to the stories, they were added to the main cast and would begin appearing in the credits halfway through season 1. Clarke and Bilson would stay with the series through its entire four-year run.

2. Adam Brody hates boats

Unlike his counterpart Seth Cohen, Adam Brody is scared of boats. In the season one finale of The O.C., Seth ends up leaving his problems behind and sails away to Tahiti, only to end up living with Luke and his father in Portland, Oregon, which we see at the beginning of Season 2. Since Brody had a fear of boats, an older stunt double was shown on the boat and was wearing a wig to make it appear that it was actually Brody.

3. Not filmed in Newport Beach

Even though the show is set in Newport Beach, The O.C. was not filmed at that location because it would have been too costly. Instead, the series was shot in Manhattan Beach, California. A majority of the beach scenes were filmed in Torrance and Redondo Beach. Additionally, Mount St. Mary’s College was the setting for the Harbor School, and UCLA was were the cast filmed scenes that were intended to take place at Berkeley.

4. Ratings Winner

The first season of The O.C. was a ratings winner for FOX. The pilot episode had 7.46 million viewers, which is extremely high for a summer show. The first season would average 9.7 million viewers. This was also the season that the most watched episode of the series would air. “The Rivals,” which saw Oliver transferring to the Harbor School and Ryan trying to expose his craziness, was viewed by 12.72 million people. The show would then be moved to Thursday nights during Season 2 and compete against series like Survivor and Grey’s Anatomy. Ratings would continue to dwindle, and the final season averaged 4.3 million viewers.

5. Winner of Many Awards

Though The O.C. never received a single Emmy Award nomination, the series was still the recipient of many awards and nominations. Josh Schwartz was nominated for a Writers Guild of America Award for penning the pilot episode. The series was nominated for Outstanding Program of the Year by the Television Critics Association in 2004. Adam Brody, Mischa Barton, and Rachel Bilson all received Teen Choice Awards for their performances, while Kelly Rowan won a Prism Award for playing Kirsten Cohen.

6. That pool looks deep!

The Cohen’s live in one of the most beautiful houses in Newport Beach, which also includes a beach house that is almost as big as some people’s homes. The pool house is next to the pristine pool that to the eye of the viewer at home looks much deeper than it actually is in real life. The pool that Seth and Ryan would chill in throughout The O.C. is actually only 4 feet deep, so the cast would film scenes on their knees to make it appear the pool was much deeper than it actually was.

7. Olivia Wilde as another character

Olivia Wilde has made quite a career for herself having starred in such popular movies as Her, Rush, and In Time. You maybe remember that she appeared in season two of The O.C. as Alex, the girl who dated both Seth and Marissa. Wilde was the second choice to play Marissa Cooper, but would lose out on the part that was given to Mischa Barton. The producers felt she had too strong of a personality to take on the emotional roller coaster that was Marissa Cooper.

8. No Phantom Planet

The O.C. was always known for its music. The series would showcase up and coming artists, which in turn would help the artists become more popular. Because of this, the producers did not want to use Phantom Planet’s “California” as the series theme song as they thought it was already too mainstream for the teen soap. When the network watched the pilot, they loved the opening theme and it was kept.

9. Mischa Barton spilled the beans

The O.C. ended up killing off Marissa Cooper at the conclusion of its third season. In order to keep fans guessing which character would be killed, commercial teasers were created that showed five different characters and a statement saying one them would be dead by the end of the episode. The cast and crew were tight lipped about which character would be facing their demise. Then an hour before the finale aired, Mischa Barton announced to Access Hollywood that her character would be the one biting the dust.

10. Online Forums

After the popularity of season one of The O.C., the series would receive some backlash for certain storylines. One of those stories was during season three when Marissa went to public school and befriended Johnny. After certain episodes would air and receive negative criticism, creator Josh Schwartz would go to online forums devoted to the show see to see what viewers would want to happen on the drama and try to incorporate those ideas into the series.

Know any fun facts about The O.C.? Let us know in the comments section below.

[Photo via FOX]

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