When “BH90210” premiered recently on Fox, viewers had a treat.
They got their favorite cast back: Gabrielle Carteris, Shannen Doherty, Jennie Garth, Brian Austin Green, Tori Spelling and Ian Ziering. The cast of the old “Beverly Hills 90210” reunited for a six-episode series with possibly more to come in the future. And each of the actors also serves as executive producers on the show.
The cast gathered to discuss this new venture with members of the media leading up to the premiere.
Garth and Spelling came up with the idea for this new show, which is not actually a reboot of the series. It is a fictionalized version of the actors recreating their old characters. So to call it a reboot is a misnomer.
“All of the characters are fictionalized versions of themselves, so we kind of wanted to leave it for the audience not to be able to decipher what's real, what's based on something real, what's totally fictionalized, and we think they will have a lot of fun doing that,” Spelling said.
Spelling added, “Everyone's been talking about a reboot for years, and the fans have wanted it. We just didn't want to do the straightforward reboot. You can't ever top the amazing 10 years we had when we started 30 years ago, so we wanted to do something fresh and groundbreaking, just like the original.”
According to Garth, “The idea was thrown out there to everybody, and we were just excited for everybody to come together and kind of get comfortable with it on their own terms.” She later said, “That's the thing about this cast. We're pretty unflappable. We come together. We work extremely well together. We're a bunch of professionals, and we know how to do our jobs, and we love doing it.”
The show aired from 1990-2000, and Ziering acknowledged, “My kids don't know ‘90210.’ Many of our kids don't know ‘90210,’ other than the billboards and all the ads they're seeing driving around town. They know ‘Sharknado’ pretty darn well, but they don't know ‘90210,’ perhaps the biggest thing I've done in my career until now. And having them understand that daddy did this show before mommy, before you guys were born. There's something that they're starting to wrap their heads around. Luckily for me, I've got the entire original show on a hard drive."
Unfortunately, Luke Perry passed away prior to getting this show together, but he is remembered fondly in this series. Doherty was against doing the show originally and was set to pass on the series.
But things changed with Perry's death.
“When Luke passed away, things drastically changed for me," Doherty said, "and I felt like it was a great opportunity to sort of honor him. And then I am really glad I made that decision, because now I get to sit up here with a lot of people that I respect and that I love, and we, as Gabs said, we went on this amazing journey together where we also got to really sort of heal through losing somebody who means the world to all of us.”
Garth, one of the two main forces behind getting this show together, said, “I think, like I said before, we used people's perceptions, and that was a great launching point for a lot of our storytelling because it's a perception, and for us to sort of take back the power, spin it and use it to tell these stories was a really interesting angle, I think, for everybody involved.”
This is a fictionalized version of the actors and, Garth explained, because of that, “For those of us who do have spouses, we chose to use fiction, completely fictional characters for those roles, just, sort of, to protect our families.”
The stories do add fun and fiction to the actors’ lives.
“(The) great part of this journey was the entire cast was willing at this point in their lives to kind of put it all out there and address things, the perception of what people had and poke fun at themselves, and that's what we all wanted to do," Spelling said. "So it was really fun doing that and being able to do it together.”
So, viewers can expect some of the same flavor of the original series but it is definitely different. Viewers do get the essence of the "Beverly Hills 90210) that they have known, despite the actors playing fictionalized versions of themselves.'