‘Gilmore Girls’: Lauren Graham Revealed Exactly What Made the Revival a Unique Experience for Her

Gilmore Girls is beloved by fans for its witty banter and fast-paced storytelling. It wasn’t an easy show to film, though. The cast of the famed series has openly discussed how grueling the filming process was. They have spoken about the expectations placed on them during filming for the original series, too. While Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life had the familiar banter, the filming process differed vastly. Lauren Graham, the actor who portrayed Lorelai Gilmore, discussed what made the process so unique.

Improvisation was not allowed on the set of Gilmore Girls 

Showrunner, Amy Sherman-Palladino, crafted Gilmore Girls after a visit to Connecticut. A small hamlet in the state served as the inspiration for Stars Hollow. A real-life day school inspired Chilton, where Rory Gilmore attended high school, too. Sherman-Palladino was protective of the story and protective of her scripts. So protective, in fact, that she didn’t allow for a single word of her writing to be altered or changed. 

Lauren Graham, Amy Sherman-Palladino, and Alexis Bledel discuss 'Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life' at the Summer TCA at the Beverly Hilton Hotel
Lauren Graham, Amy Sherman-Palladino, and Alexis Bledel | Eric Charbonneau/Netflix

Sean Gunn, the actor who took on the role of Kirk Gleason, has been open about how the Gilmore Girls process worked. He told Vulture that word-perfect was not just an expectation, it was a requirement. He said, “I should note there was no improvising at all. There isn’t a single syllable that has ever been improvised by anyone on Gilmore Girls. Literally. Every syllable was verbatim.” Gunn revealed that Sherman-Palladino wanted even words like “didn’t” to be said precisely as she wrote it.

Lauren Graham revealed that she had more creative input for ‘Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life’ 

Older, wiser, and further along in their careers, the cast of Gilmore Girls came back together for the 2016 Netflix revival, Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life. While fans remain split on their feelings about it, Graham has been incredibly positive when speaking about the four-part limited series. The famed actor revealed that she and other cast members had more creative freedom during the revival. 

During a chat with Glamour, Graham revealed that returning to Stars Hollow was different in 2016. She had more creative freedom and felt that the entire process was a bit more collaborative and fun. She said, “We lived with these people as long as anybody and feel very protective and interested in what they would do. Amy was, in a different way, open to that. It just felt much more collaborative and fun.” Still, Graham did not suggest a single line was improvised, though. 

Lauren Graham loved Lorelai’s self-discovery storyline 

By now, fans know that Lorelai left Stars Hollow to hike the Pacific Crest Trail after reading the book Wild. Lorelai, unsure of herself, her life, and her business needed to find something, and she headed west to do so. She didn’t exactly hike so much as she hung around, though. Eventually, Lorelai had a self-discovery journey that fit her decidedly “indoorsy” persona.

Lauren Graham looks on as Lorelai Gilmore in Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life
Lauren Graham in ‘Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life’ | Saeed Adyani/Netflix

Ahead of the event’s November 2016 release, Graham told Glamour that she was excited for fans to see the journey. That storyline reportedly played into her decision to join the production in the first place. It was just “weird” enough to feel like there was a story left to tell. While much of the revival was a bit strange to fans, Lorelai’s journey is one of the more liked aspects. Graham’s instincts certainly seemed to be correct. She’s open to the idea of returning for a second season, too, although it has yet to happen.

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