7 Teen Shows That Sparked Real Life Romances


Devoted fans of the teen television category always love the potential of a fictional on-screen romance budding into the real thing! Viewers watch in awe of the on-screen chemistry between actors and can’t help but wonder if any of those emotions translate into the star’s real lives as well. Luckily, the avid fans that rooted for Seth and Summer or Serena and Dan will be happy to learn that some of these iconic teen couples did actually date in real life alongside their time together on screen! Follow along for eight teen series couples that dated and had real-life romances behind the scenes:

7. The O.C. — Adam Brody and Rachel Bilson

Adam Brody and Rachel Bilson played the iconic duo Seth and Summer on the short-lived but highly popular drama, The OC. A huge part of the appeal behind this mismatched couple is how different they both are! Summer was the most desired girl in school while Seth was considered a dork and simply pined for her from afar. Luckily, this duo eventually found each other and all our dreams (and Seth’s!) came true, especially after fans discovered that they were also dating in real life! Although their on-screen couple got a happily ever after, Brody and Bilson split after three years of dating shortly before the show aired its finale. Adam went on to marry Leighton Meester and Rachel dated Hayden Christensen for 10 years until their recent split.

© WB / Courtesy Everett Collection


6. The Vampire Diaries — Ian Somerhalder and Nina Dobrev

Actress Nina Dobrev played Elena Gilbert on Vampire Diaries and her character was constantly torn about where her romantic loyalties lied when it came to the Salvatore brothers, Damon and Stephen. Luckily, in real life, Dobrev knew exactly with whom she belonged and dated Ian Somerhalder for three years before they called it quits in 2013. Despite the breakup, this duo was forced to continue their relationship on screen until Dobrev left the show in 2015. Ian went on to date, marry and have a daughter with Twilight star Nikki Reed while Dobrev has been linked with various Hollywood stars and was most recently spotted with Glen Powell.

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5. One Tree Hill — Sophia Bush and Austin Nichols

Sophia Bush had a habit of dating her costars, and especially those she starred alongside on One Tree Hill! Bush’s character Brooke had a tumultuous dating life in high school, but as soon as she met Julian, played by Austin Nichols, she was completely smitten and swept off her feet. Austin Nichols proved to be quite the charmer in real life as well and dated Bush off-screen for almost six years! Although on One Tree Hill Brooke and Julian seem to be each other’s perfect match, in real life the relationship supposedly ended because she “didn’t think he was the one.” Nichols went on to date Chloe Bennet but called it quits this past year, while Sophia Bush continues to keep her relationships super private.

Photo by Broadimage / Rex Features

4. Gilmore Girls — Alexis Bledel and Milo Ventimiglia

Alexis Bledel and Milo Ventimiglia famously played love interests Rory and Jess on Gilmore Girls. Despite their bickering and clashing personalities, Jess quickly became a fan favorite and many fans were rooting for Rory to end up with him. To the viewers’ delight, this gorgeous couple wasn’t just an on-screen fling, but actually dated in real life as well! Milo joined the cast in 2001 and the duo began dating in private one year later and continued a relationship for over four years. Although marriage was on the table at one point, this uber-private duo ended their relationship in July 2006 for reasons that still remain unclear. Bledel went on to marry actor Vincent Kartheiser, while Ventimiglia continued to keep his romances private, but has been rumored to be linked with Hayden Panettiere and most recently Kelly Egarian.

Photo by Lionel Hahn/AbacaUsa.com

3. Gossip Girl — Blake Lively and Penn Badgley

Although Blake Lively and husband Ryan Reynolds are one of Hollywood’s most swoon-worthy golden couples at the moment, there was a time when she had a relationship with her Gossip Girl costar Penn Badgley! Coincidentally, Lively and Badgley’s three-year relationship came to end simultaneously as their on-screen love interests Serena and Dan split. The duo began privately dating in 2007 after meeting on set and went public with their relationship in 2008. Although both stars are quite reserved about their personal lives, there seemed to be no bad blood between them and they were spotted on various friend outings following the split. Although their off-screen romance didn’t stand the test of time, Dan and Serena will forever be a duo after fans witnessed them reunite and marry on the Gossip Girl finale.

Giovanni Rufino / © The CW / Courtesy Everett Collection

2. One Tree Hill — Sophia Bush and Chad Michael Murray

Aside from Austin Nichols, Sophia Bush dated another one of her One Tree Hill costars, Chad Michael Murray! During the early seasons of One Tree Hill, Bush and Murray played Brooke and Lucas who dated on-screen and had quite the tumultuous on-and-off relationship. In real life, Bush and Murray dated and even had their brief happily ever after when they married in 2005. Unfortunately, five months later Bush filed for an annulment after rumors surfaced that Murray cheated on Bush with his House of Wax costar Paris Hilton. Bush was denied her request, but their divorce was granted in December 2006. Despite their seemingly tension-filled split, the costars were forced to work together and remain professional on set for years following the split.

1. Riverdale — Cole Sprouse and Lili Reinhart

One of the most recent revelations of teen show relationships was Riverdale’s Cole Sprouse and Lili Reinhart! The two play Betty and Jughead on the show and their characters began dating midway through the first season. Suspicions of their romance first began when Sprouse posted a photo of Reinhart posing in a field of flowers on his Instagram page. Neither Sprouse nor Reinhart have personally confirmed their relationship, but rumors continued to swirl after they were reportedly spotted by an eyewitness kissing and getting cozy at Comic-Con back in July. The “Bughead” romance was one of the most swooned over relationships of the show, so fans were even more thrilled to hear the exciting potential of an off-screen relationship as well!