Ed Westwick has captured the hearts of many fangirls all over the world with his iconic role as Chuck Bass in Gossip Girl released in 2017.
The 33-year-old British actor landed the big-dollar role in the teen drama alongside well-known names including Blake Lively, Leighton Meester, and Penn Badgley, and he starred in a whopping 117 episodes.
After this appearance, Ed was unanimously crowned by his fans as the king of brooding male characters to ever grace Hollywood. He went on to star in the hit film Chalet Girl, amongst many more, including Son of Rambow, 100 Feet, and Billionaire Ransom.
However, in 2021 Ed decided to drop his broody character and turned his hand to comedy, as he appeared alongside blonde bombshell Louise Linton in the American comedy thriller, Me, You, Madness.
While talking about his role in an interview with OK News in 2021, Ed admitted that comedy was “totally new territory” for him and that it was a welcome change to try out a new role entirely.
“For years I’ve done a lot of drama and walked around in a suit with my hands in my pockets brooding a lot in Gossip Girl, and people see that a lot and this is one of the reasons I was happy with this film and this whole thing. I got to express a different side of me through the character and let go and have some fun,” he stated during the interview.
Since his big break, Ed has starred in many other big movies and has evolved from just being Chuck Bass to being a well-respected TV personality.
In a recent interview with Numero Netherlands, Ed shared how his rise to fame with ‘Gossip Girl’ has impacted his choice of character and career over the years.
Ed, we all know and remember you as Chuck Bass from the hit series Gossip Girl. How has this series and its worldwide success impacted your career and changed your life?
Oh, massively. If you look at it from before the show started or before I was given the role, everything changed. I moved to New York, to a different country, and left my parents’ house, so that was the first thing that happened. The show, which was very successful and ran for a long time and a lot of people enjoyed it, gave me a little taste of fame, the chance to have a little bit of money and also the chance to meet new people. And then also the chance to grow as an actor. One of the best things about being on a long-running show that was so ambitious and clever was that as a young actor, I got to play and play and play cause there were so many storylines. Towards the end, things started to feel repetitive because you ran out of things that you could do, but I think they did as good a job as possible at finding stories to tell with the characters, within that world.
When asked how far his Chuck Bass character has taken him in the movie industry, he responded “It changed my life in every single way possible. And it was amazing that we still talk about it today. I think it’s a legacy. Of course, I want more for my legacy, I’m still quite a young man, but not in a greedy way. I’m very happy with what I’ve achieved and the things I’ve done the people I’ve met and the places I’ve seen. It’s something to be very proud of, the fact that you can do something like that at such a young age, 19 to 25. We still talk about it, it still has presence, but I don’t know if it’s as relevant. I think some of the themes may be relevant because it was one of those good TV shows. Good TV or film is about people, it’s about the things that we all deal with. And ‘Gossip Girl’ did that. It talked about family, love, struggles as an individual, about growing up, all of these themes that we all relate to. So yeah, it was good. And it’s still good.
Being from England, how hard was it for you to adopt an American accent?
It’s a funny thing that if you don’t practice it, it goes away. ‘Gossip Girl’ was the first time I’d been hired for a job where I had to do an American accent. Right before that, I was auditioning for many shows in LA. I was in LA for a month or two months trying to get a job, so I was very practiced. I practiced every day, sometimes two or three auditions a day. And it was all different voices, because for Chuck it was a very intentional choice that I made for the way he speaks.
The interviewer further probed into his reasons for choosing the roles he played in movies after ‘Gossip Girl’.
To this inquiry Ed replied; “It’s just that, it’s new. That was one of the things, one of the only downsides that come with being on a long show, that eventually there were times when you’re going to be a bit bored cause you are wearing the same clothes, you’re speaking the same way and it becomes a little bit more like a day job. But it was still a fantastic day job. So to go and do different projects, it just keeps everything interesting. And also I get to challenge myself because I don’t really know exactly what I’m going to do or how it’s going to be. And the thing I enjoy most now is the collaboration with other people.
Ed Westwick's recent movies
The interview also shed light on new movies that Ed is currently working on.
You will be starring in two thrillers. The first of those is an action thriller ‘Deep Fear’ which was released in June this year and the other one is a horror thriller ‘DarkGame’, which centers on a determined detective in a race against time to stop a twisted game show on the dark web, where captives are forced to compete for their lives. Social media and the dark web are a huge part of today’s world. How does the film portray these real-life issues?
Well, it’s kind of a zeitgeist thing in a way. It’s like a weird zeitgeisty thing because it is very current. What’s going on in the dark web, what’s going on with social media, the way that it’s ever-present, the things it does to our brain, the desires and behaviors. It’s a very interesting kind of setting for a story these days. This film’s quite gruesome, thrilling dark.
I’ve never played a cop before. I wanted to play a cop, I was interested in that mentality, in that type of person. It’s so different to be a homicide detective, it’s nothing like my life and it’s nothing like most people’s lives. To be constantly inundated with death and then death in this way, it’s terrible. So this one’s probably not one for the squirmish. I’m very excited for this one as well.
These new action thrillers portray how much Ed has grown into a big TV personality since starting as Chuck Bass in Gossip Girl. The Dark Game movie is set to be released in 2024 so we're going to be seeing more of our beloved Ed Westwick in the coming year.