Ready to feel old? Today, “Veronica Mars” turns 10, which means you set your ringtone as “We Used to Be Friends” and started swooning over Logan Echolls a whole decade ago. If that doesn’t blow your mind enough, we’ve rounded up 22 fun facts about the show that even the most die-hard Marshmallows may not know.
Can you imagine Paul Rudd as Vinnie Van Lowe? How about a Neptune without Dick Casablancas? Both almost happened, and the craziness doesn’t stop there.
1. Kristen Bell beat out 100 women to play Veronica.
There were 100 young actresses who read for the part of Veronica — including Amanda Seyfried, who ended up playing Lilly Kane — but Bell was the first that creator Rob Thomas saw.
2. The second-runner-up is very familiar, though.
The second choice for Veronica was Alona Tal, and Thomas created the character of Meg Manning just for her.
3. Can you imagine Jason Dohring as Duncan?
Jason Dohring originally auditioned for Duncan and Teddy Dunn read for Logan. Throughout the show, to keep fans from confusing the two characters, the stars were color-coded. Seriously — Duncan always wore blue and Logan always wore earth tones.
4. There are more casting shockers from there!
Heather Graham was considered to play Kendall Casablancas, but she was working on “Emily’s Reasons Why Not.” Charisma Carpenter was cast instead — and she also happened to be a big fan of the show. Alyson Hannigan was also cast as Trina Echolls over Tara Reid and Denise Richards.
5. Oh, and Paul Rudd was almost a huge part of the show.
Though he ended up playing a My Pretty Pony musician in Season 3, Rudd was was originally considered to play Vinnie Van Lowe.
6. Veronica could have been like Angelina Jolie.
The pilot’s original script described Veronica Mars much differently than the detective we know and love: “She is not cute. She is sexy. Tough. Prematurely jaded. Angelina Jolie at 17."
7. Dick wasn’t supposed to stick around past a few episodes.
Thomas said that Ryan Hansen was picked to play Dick because he had “good hair” and looked like a California surfer boy. “He had one word in episode two of ‘Veronica Mars,’ and that the word was: ‘Logan,’” Thomas recalled, but everyone loved him so much that the kept him around and upped Hansen to series regular.
8. Actually, almost all of your favorite characters had big changes from the pilot.
The original production notes and pilot script had some other big changes: names! Lilly's name was Samantha; Lianne Mars' was Rebecca, then Abbie; Wallace's last name was Collier; Logan's last name was Hewitt; and the Kanes family’s last name was Cain, then Caine.
9. One relationship was almost like “Flowers in the Attic.”
Veronica and Duncan were going to actually be related. After it got picked up by UPN instead of a cable network, Thomas said he nixed the idea.
10. LoVe wasn’t always in the air.
"The truth is, we never had any intention at all for Logan to end up with Veronica,” Thomas revealed. "[Dohring] was hired to be the obligatory psychotic jackass. In the writers' room, sitting around watching dailies, we would all gather around, and it was like, 'We want to watch that. We want to watch those two onscreen together.'"
11. But Dohring and Bell found out about the relationship in episode 6.
Dohring revealed that Thomas told him and Bell the surprising news so that they would "soften up" a little around episode 6.
12. By the way, that LoVe was real. At least according to Dohring.
“A lot of that emotion was very real for me. I think I was in love with [Kristen] for the three years we made that show,” Dohring said. “Like, I truly felt like I would die without her, and I think that’s what underlined everything people loved about them as a couple.”
13. No one in the cast knew who killed Lilly — and Aaron almost wasn’t the murderer.
The cast didn't know who murdered Lilly while filming Season 1, but Thomas said he knew it would always be Harry Hamlin's Aaron Echolls. However, that almost didn’t happen. Hamlin booked a movie in Australia that conflicted with the filming of the Season 1 finale, but thankfully, he turned it down to stick with “Veronica Mars” instead.
14. Auditions for Logan weren’t all about being a jackass — they got emotional.
"When we did the original auditions, they gave me a couple of [Logan-acts-like-a-jerk] scenes, then I also got a scene where he’s burned by a cigarette lighter by his dad. It was intense and emotional,” Doring said. “Rob wanted to see not just me playing the [jerk] but also if I could play the softer side. It gave me a chance to do both. It didn’t come out until a little bit later in the show, but [eventually] you got to see why he could be such a [jerk] and also how he’s just in this terrible situation."
15. Aaron Paul, Rider Strong, and Kristin Cavallari were on the show.
They are just a few of the big names that appeared. Some of the more famous guest arcs also include Leighton Meester, Adam Scott, Dianna Agron, and of course, pizza-loving Max Greenfield.
16. Things could have been much more graphic.
The original pilot had Lilly's body found and dumped in a river by her father, Jake. The scene in which Veronica wakes up after being raped was also longer and more graphic. Both ended up being cut or edited down by the network.
17. The whole tone of the show was a lot darker at first.
The original project notes for the show also had concepts like Veronica being 13 when Lilly was murdered; Keith being fired because of evidence disappearing from the police station, likely because of Don Lamb; and Veronica discovering that Don, Strom Jenkins, and Jake Kane were part of a larger conspiracy to cover up Lilly's death.
18. Two actors doubled up throughout the show’s three seasons.
Adam Kaufman played Jessica Chastain's character's boyfriend in Season 1 and Agent Carter in the Thomas's Season 4 pitch of Veronica in the FBI (see video), and James Jordan played Thomas “Lucky” Dohanic in Season 2 and Tim Foyle in Season 3.
19. Only two characters were in every episode of “Veronica Mars.”
Veronica and Keith were the only ones in every single episode. Surprised?
20. Ever wonder how Thomas came up with Piz’s name?
Mark Piznarski, who directed the Veronica Mars pilot, inspired Stosh "Piz" Piznarski’s crazy name.
21. Your other favorite show had a big crossover with “Veronica Mars.”
On“Arrested Development,” the only episode in which George-Michael was ever bleeped was in Season 3’s “Family Ties.” He tried to talk about the show to Maeby, and instead, they subtitled “reference to off-network high school private eye drama censored by Fox.” Alia Shawkat and Michael Cera both later guest-starred on “Veronica Mars.”
22. The show cheated death after its first season.
“Veronica Mars” was the lowest-rated show in network history to get renewed for a second season. It was the only drama that survived UPN’s 2004-05 season. A decade later, they got a movie. Miracles do happen, Marshmallows.