Gossip Girl First Look: William Baldwin as William van der Woodsen

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William Baldwin’s Gossip Girl role as Serena's father (also William) was a challenge on many levels. For one, it forced the 46-year-old actor to face the awful truth:

“The hardest thing to take in was that I was playing Blake Lively’s father,” he said. “As scary as it is, I AM old enough to be her father. But it’s still tough to take."

“I’m [supposed to be] with the girl,” he told EW. “not the father of the girl.”

Originally, Gossip Girl producers approached Baldwin last year to play a different role (we're not sure which), but he nixed it. “It was only for one episode,” he said.

“So I told them to come up with something [bigger].”

Father and Daughter Reunion

He got the bigger role he desired with William van der Woodsen.

Serena and Eric's MIA dad, who first appears April 26, will be forced out of hiding due to a crisis involving ex-wife Lily. Baldwin says he “avoided meeting” Blake Lively in advance of the scene during which the father and daughter reconnect after 15 years.

“We didn’t see each other virtually until when they rolled the cameras,” he says. “I wanted to limit the exposure, because I really wanted it to have an unknown quality to it.”

As for how long he'll be sticking around?

“If I were a betting man, it would make sense for something to happen [in Season Four] as well,” he hints. “It feels to me like they’re going to want to bring William back."

What do you think of Baldwin being cast in the role - and what do you think will happen when our fair Serena finally reconnects with her long lost father?

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.

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    im sooo excited Dr van der woodsen will be back,,yeah, i really hope he and lily will be back together, coz the humphreys sucks, totally insiders


    i hope that William van der Woodsen and Serenas mom Lilly end up together!!!!! i hate the humphreys!
    they don't belong on the upper east side..sorry you just make this show boring...


    A better looking actor should have been hired for the role. Billy Baldwin's too ugly to be Serena's dad. And unless he's lost a lot of weight recently, he's quite a pudge. Not the right guy!


    I agree with Goose, but it's all Stanislavski's, some actors were taught that way. We did Meisner, but sometimes Stanislavski's is really handy. I think it's cool that he did that because sometimes it gives that extra little oomph to the scene. Cute interview though. I was a little weary of him as her dad but I think it's going to be good. :]


    A good actor can be the best friends with his colleage and effortlessly fake the "unknown quality", as he calls it, or whatever else the scene requires, and he can fake it on the spot. That's the awful truth, folks. Chucks makes magic with B on any given day. No sweat.


    Oooh, Dr Van der Woodsen :D


    Loved him in Dirty Sexy Money. Exited for this!