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Rachel Bilson Apologizes To The O.C.'s Tate Donovan For Being An 'A**hole' On Set!

rachel bilson oc tate donovan apology

Rachel Bilson is apologizing for when she was young and ignorant!

The O.C. star chatted with former co-star Tate Donovan during the latest episode of her and Melinda Clarke’s Welcome to the O.C., Bitches podcast, and opened up about some of her past behavior.

It all began when Donovan owned up to some of his own diva-like behavior, recalling how he turned down multiple offers to appear in a reunion episode for Magnum P.I. — on which he originally appeared in the ‘80s. The 57-year-old explained he even told the star of the show, Tom Selleck, that he couldn’t be bothered to do the reunion because he was “a film actor now” — a comment that, in hindsight, made him sound like an “a**hole.”

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He shared:

“Can you believe that? To Tom Selleck himself. I turned down. I look back on that like, ‘I’m such an a**hole.’ I never got the chance to tell Tom Selleck how much of an idiot I was.”

Well, turns out, Tate wasn’t the only “a**hole” (his words, not ours!) who needed to hold themselves accountable. His confession inspired Bilson to own up to some of her questionable behavior when she was an up-and-comer on the set of The O.C.. She recalled:

“That brings something pretty poignant for me. You went on to direct us on The O.C…. and I know some of us kids were little a**holes, and I think that that speaks to that whole unaware, young, youthful, ignorant, like, just idiots.”

The Hart of Dixie star went on to say her apparent attitude was “influenced” by others on set, sharing:

“I hope I wasn’t as bad as it’s come off. I hope I wasn’t. You know, you get influenced, I’d say, by your surroundings. Let’s put it that way.”

Whoa, wait a minute. It definitely sounds like Rachel was influenced by other cast members. But who could she mean?

Unfortunately, the 39-year-old didn’t go into more detail, but she did apologize to Donovan — who also directed several episodes of the teen soap — sharing:

“I thought you were so wonderful, such a wonderful director and an amazing human. So if I ever added to any of the a**holeness, I want to apologize on record here right now.”

Fortunately, the actor said the actress was a “total sweetheart.” However, Tate did admit he felt “bad” for the past comments he made about the younger cast members during a 2013 appearance on Andy Cohen’s Watch What Happens Live. He said at the time:

“They all started out great. Then, all of them, they just fell apart…When you first get fame, you’re so insecure that you just become a ding dong.”

Looking back on that interview, Tate said he regrets making those generalizations, telling Bilson and Clarke:

“I think I’ve gotten in a little trouble about The O.C.. I think Adam Brody was a little angry at me for some of the things I said.”

Rachel noted:

“I think you generalized. You said the kids were a**holes.”

Tate agreed, adding:

“I did generalize. I feel bad because everyone sort of jumped on that. I thought you kids, the whole cast, it’s awesome. Especially that first year. It was a total blast.”

Well, we’re glad both stars are owning up to their behavior, but these comments make us wonder: was Rachel one of the on-set bullies that caused Mischa Barton to leave the series?

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As we recently reported, The Hills: New Beginnings star got uncharacteristically candid about her decision to leave the hit FOX series, revealing that conversations about her exit started a LOT earlier than fans would have expected. She shared:

“It’s a bit complicated. It started pretty early on because it had a lot to do with them adding Rachel [Bilson] in last minute as, after the first season, a series regular and evening out everybody’s pay.”

Mischa went on to note that “general bullying from some of the men on set” also led to her exit, before saying:

“There were people on that set that were very mean to me. It wasn’t, like, the most ideal environment for a young, sensitive girl who’s also been thrust into stardom to have to put up with.”


Let’s put everything together now: Tate says the younger actors on the show were a-holes. Mischa says she was bullied by “some of the men” and that people were “very mean” to her. Rachel admitted she had a bit of an attitude that was “influenced” by her “surroundings.”

So it sounds like the bad apples may have been the younger male cast members, if these accounts are to be believed, and those bad apples apparently spoiled the barrel.

Obviously, this is all conjecture at this point — but Mischa teased that she’s currently working on projects that will allow her to “really talk about” her experience on the hit show, so maybe we’ll get more answers soon! Maybe Rachel can get her old on-screen pal on the podcast!

In the meantime, what do U think went down on this set, Perezcious readers? Watch a clip from Tate’s interview with his co-stars (below) and sound off in the comments.

[Image via Warner Bros./Ivan Nikolov/WENN]

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May 26, 2021 14:12pm PDT