The book of Badgley is wide open! Penn Badgley stopped by Watch What Happens Live on Wednesday, Mar. 11, where he opened up about what it was like to date — and subsequently break up with — Blake Lively while working on the set of Gossip Girl.
A viewer first asked the Cymbeline actor, 28, about his best and worst on-screen kisses. “It’s hard to say,” Badgley replied. “On-screen kisses are not really that real.”
The actor has kissed many leading ladies including his former girlfriend Lively and fellow Gossip Girl costars Hilary Duff, Leighton Meester, and Jessica Szohr. He’s also smooched his Cymbeline costar Dakota Johnson and Easy A love interest Emma Stone.
According to Badgley, his real-life romance with Lively made those steamy lip locks the most memorable. “I’d say best…” he mused, “I’ll say it was Blake, because we actually had a relationship at the time.”
As for his worst? “Maybe Blake after we broke up,” Badgley said with a smirk.
He and Lively, 27, were romantically entwined off-camera from 2007 to 2010, a time period which overlapped with an on-screen romance between their Gossip Girl characters Dan Humphrey and Serena van der Woodsen. After their relationship ended, Lively briefly dated Leonardo DiCaprio before she met the love of her life Ryan Reynolds, whom she secretly wed in September 2012. (Badgley told Elle in May 2013 that he did not get the couple a wedding gift.)
Still, the exes remained amicable after their split, and continued shooting Gossip Girl together until the CW show ended in late 2012, with a series finale that (spoiler alert) saw their fictional alter egos marry. “We were consummately professional,” Badgley said, acknowledging how difficult it was at times. “And I think we should both pat ourselves on the back for getting through it… We handled it.”
As for Badgley’s thoughts on Dan Humphrey turning out to be Gossip Girl at the end of the series? “I think it was probably the most plausible,” he shared. “It makes him a bipolar, transgender schizophrenic, like obsessive-compulsive, incredible manager of time. You know?”
Watch part of his appearance above!