10 Things You Didn’t Know About Beverly Hills, 90210
“Beverly Hills, 90210” is one of those defining shows for teenagers and young adults in the ‘90s. It aired from October 4, 1990 to May 17, 2000. During those ten years, a lot happened. Many characters came and went and a number of important topics were addressed. For some of us, this is where we learned about date rape, gay rights, animal rights, alcoholism, drug abuse, domestic violence, sex, anti-Semitism, teenage suicide, teenage pregnancy and AIDS. While the show did tackle some pretty difficult subject matter, for many of us, it was the characters and the relationships that kept us coming back. It has been 15 years since the show first debuted, so let’s take a look at some of the things that most of us don’t know about “Beverly Hills, 90120!”
Aaron Spelling created the role of Gina Kincaid for Vanessa Marcil. Gina replaced Tiffani Thiessen’s character Valerie Malone as the show’s vixen.
Kristin Dattilo was offered the role of Brenda Walsh, but she turned it down. She later appeared in the episode “One Man and a Baby” as Melissa Coolidge.
Jennie Garth was the first to be cast. She had to audition for the role of Kelly Taylor five times in total.
Gabriella Carteris was the oldest cast member. She was 29-years-old when the series began. She initially auditioned for the role of Brenda Walsh, but producers felt that she would be better as Andrea.
West Beverly High School isn’t a real school. Producers had to use that name because Beverly Hills High School would not allow the use of their name in the show.
During the first season, when Donna Martin tries out for school D.J., she is referred to as Donna Morgan. Throughout the rest of the show, her last name is Martin.
Luke Perry had initially auditioned for the role of Steve Sanders, but the role went to Ian Ziering.
Perry was cast instead as Dylan McKay. Dylan wasn’t initially an original cast member. He was only supposed to appear in a couple of episodes. Fox didn’t want to hire him on as a regular, so Aaron Spelling had to pay for Perry’s salary out of his own pocket. It wasn’t until Fox saw how popular he was with the audience that they decided to make him a regular cast member.
Hilary Swank played single mother Carly Reynolds during the eighth season of “Beverly Hills, 90210.”
She was promised that it would be a two-year contract, but she was fired after 13 episodes and written off the show.
Tori Spelling auditioned under the name of Tori Mitchell for the role of Kelly Taylor.
She was eventually recognized and was cast as Donna Martin.
When Shannen Doherty left “Beverly Hills, 90210,” Drew Barrymore was offered a spot on the show as her replacement. She wasn’t interested in working in television though.
Alyssa Milano was then a strong contender for the position, as was Alicia Silverstone. When they both turned it down, it went to Tiffani Thiessen.