“F—, I can’t do it,” said Rachel Bilson through tears as she and Melinda Clarke caught up with Barton.
Mischa Barton returned to “The OC” on Tuesday, reuniting with former costars Rachel Bilson and Melinda Clarke on the pair’s show rewatch podcast.
After much demand from listeners, Barton appeared on “Welcome to The OC, Bitches” this week to revisit some of her character Marissa Cooper’s most memorable moments … including, of course, her epic death scene.
“It’s heavy. What I remember about it is the view of having played it, not from having watched it. In fact, I think I’ve only seen it once in my life,” she shared, surprising both Bilson and Clarke.
She then recalled requesting “more blood” after her character was fatally wounded in a car accident.
“It was going to border on being a TV death and I wanted it to be super dramatic and as realistic as you could get for T’he OC,’ like she went out with a bang,” she continued. “I remember being under that car, on the ground and [Benjamin McKenzie’s Ryan Atwood] having wrestled her out. I feel like if you’re going to kill a character … it needed to be a thing after everything she’s been through.”
With that, Bilson cued up footage of the moment for them to all watch together. “I don’t particularly want to, but I will,” said Barton, before the clip started to roll.
“Poor Marissa, she really, really goes through it,” Barton said as they watched. “I don’t remember the fire, I guess because I’m playing dead. I’m unaware of what’s going on here.”
Bilson started to break down in tears, sobbing as Ryan pulled Marissa from the flaming car before carrying her down the street to the spot where she would then succumb to her injuries. “F—. I can’t do it! It’s so intense. It really hurts,” she exclaimed.
“I’m getting really sad too. You can’t cry, Rachel!” added Mischa, before saying she couldn’t watch McKenzie getting “all emotional,” declaring, “I’m done now.” After the clip wrapped, she told them both, “That was more intense than I thought that would be.”
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Elsewhere in the full episode, Barton explained that it was “impossible” for her to actually watch the show back when it originally aired, blaming the jam-packed production schedule. In retrospect, she said she wishes she could have, so she could have a “clearer picture” of where the fans were at in the show as they watched it live. “It was a lot,” she added of how hectic a time it was in her life.
Before they went into more of her memorable moments, Barton also recalled the audition process — which, she said, wasn’t “smooth sailing,” She said she first was told to come to L.A. to audition for a role in McG’s “Fast Lane,” and was told “he’s not just interested in you for this.” Initially, she didn’t want to go, because she wanted to finish high school and celebrate her birthday in New York … but made the trip anyway.
“That was kind of wild. It wasn’t like a smooth sailing thing. I remember when I first sat down in that office … they were like, the reason we want you for this is because you are kind of English and a New Yorker,” said the British-American actress. “McG was like, I think that’s why you’re gonna work for this role, but he was like, we’re gonna have to take you in and fight for it. I went through multiple rounds at the studio. It was McG who really championed it, to the point where he got film, shot me himself and paid for it.”
“I wasn’t really like their first choice, in terms of those test readings,” she added.
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After reminiscing about her first scenes with McKenzie and the infamous Tijuana overdose, she addressed her Season 2 furniture-flipping freakout.
“What I remember about that is I was so frustrated with some of the character writing and not knowing how to play it at that point,” she admitted. “I was like, what can we do here that will make this an interesting scene as opposed to screaming at her mother again. That scream is all of my frustration at that time being taken out and not knowing what to do with some of the writing, to be honest, or the scene in general.”
“It’s hard to play a scene when you’re just screaming in someone’s face. There’s that frustration you feel as a young person that’s hard to replicate again on camera,” she added. “That’s what I remember about throwing the furniture into the pool. I took a lot out in that scream, it was cathartic.”
She also admitted she didn’t know “Saturday Night Live” had spoofed the moment she shot Ryan’s brother Try to Imogen Heep’s “Hide and Seek,” said she felt her romance with Olivia Wilde’s Alex was “cut short” and revealed she was told to watch scenes of Kate Hudson in “Almost Famous” over and over to prepare for the role.
“I love you so much,” Bilson said as the episode wrapped. “I know we haven’t seen each other in forever, but I always love you from afar and support you. We’re so happy you came on.”
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