Cast and crew members of the locally filmed drama series “One Tree Hill” gathered with about 200 fans of the series to watch a special screening of the ninth (and final) season premiere Thursday, Jan. 5, at the ArcLight movie theater in Hollywood.

After the screening, the stars stuck around for a Q&A moderated by’s Meg Masters and to take questions from the audience. It was similar to an event held in October at the University of North Carolina Wilmington just before the show wrapped production.

In attendance at the ArcLight were series creator Mark Schwahn and actors Sophia Bush, Bethany Joy Galeotti, Paul Johansson, Shantel VanSanten, Rob Buckley, Jackson Brundage, Tyler Hilton, Lee Norris and Stephen Colletti.

The cast teased a bit of what will happen in the ninth season, which Schwahn called his favorite yet. Returning to the show full time this season is Hilton, who plays bad boy musician Chris Keller, who has not appeared regularly since season two.

“It was like going back to high school five years later,” Hilton said of rejoining the show.

Much of the night was spent reminiscing about their favorite scenes, moments and episodes. Schwahn gave a shout out to the Tower 7 restaurant in Wrightsville Beach at one point as he recalled pitching ideas for an especially emotional episode to some cast members over a meal there.

Schwahn also took a moment to reflect on the show’s legacy as a guilty pleasure and critics’ punching bag despite its passionately loyal fan base.

“After 187 epsiodes, whoever is still hating on the show is losing the battle,” Schwahn said.

The ninth season of “One Tree Hill” premieres at 8 p.m. Jan. 11 on The CW.

More pictures from ‘An Evening with One Tree Hill, Los Angeles are in the gallery

I was lucky enough to spend my night in L.A. at “An Evening with One Tree Hill” watching the season 9 premiere with some of the cast. As Bethany Joy Galeotti and Paul Johansson​ took their seats behind me, I tried to remain calm. I also tried not to stare at the beautifulness that is Sophia Bush all night, but no one’s perfect. Anyway, there were tears, there were laughs, but most of all, there was excitement in the room. It’s certainly gearing up to be the most gut-wrenching season EVER. The first minute of the premiere will literally BLOW YOUR MIND. Get ready.

Stay tuned tomorrow for my full recap of the night (complete with more Q&A answers!), but for now, here are 10 things to expect this season!






1. Tons of nakedness!

Specifically from Chase and Alex. Sorry, Nathan fans. I know we’re used to seeing James Lafferty​ shirtless in every episode, but we get Alex in panties and Chase in tighty-whities. That’s a fair trade, right? Oh, and lots of sex talk. Lots.

2. Chris Keller​ in TOTAL creep mode (just the way we like him).

Chris Keller is back, ladies. And he’s on the prowl as usual. When I talked with Tyler last month, he told me that Chris definitely gets laid this season. And despite some MAJOR one-sided flirting with Haley in the first episode back, my suspicions are true. Looks like his eyes are set on another fellow musician… a taken one.

3. Tyler and Chase bromance.

It’s funny that these unlikely two become friends this season considering Chris is after his girl and all. Tyler told me that he spent A LOT of time with Stephen Colletti​ while filming, so expect some pretty crazy hi-jinks. Mark Schwahn says that it basically “turned into an episode of Porky’s” with these two.

4. Clay and Quinn hit a rough patch.

We’re introduced to a sleepwalking Clay in the premiere, which doesn’t seem like much of a big deal. For him. Quinn, on the other hand, is really worried and stays up all night keeping an eye on her man. It’s all good for now, but sh*t is sure to hit the fan sooner or later. The first minute of the premiere features a major fight between the two. MAJOR.

5. Lots of very dark stuff.

Shantel VanSanten calls season 9 “a complete rollercoaster.” Mark says it’s “very much a One Tree Hill season,” while Sophia adds that it’s just “darker and more naked.” And we’re totally OK with that. Bring on the dark and naked!

6. Fat Mouth.

No, that’s not a rapper’s nickname. When I talked to Lee Norris a while back, he hinted at a MAJOR change in his character and I speculated a lot of things, but not this. Turns out Mouth has “gained nearly 60 pounds.” I wonder what Millie will think. Rob Buckley tells us what really happened though — “Mouth ate Skillz.” Oh, Rob.

7. Brooke’s dad is back

I was a little annoyed that Brooke’s father missed her wedding and basically forgot she existed for most of her life just to come back and expect things to be OK. But after watching the premiere, I’m intrigued by his return. And the comedic chemistry with ex-wife Victoria promises to be a good time.

8. Lots of love.

Yes, this season will be very dark. And intense. Very. But, Mark assures us that these last 13 episodes are chock-full of “relationship-driven stuff.” And that definitely rings true in the premiere (except for Naley who unfortunately never share the screen). Brooke and Julian are very much in parent-mode, but still have time to make out. And stuff.

9. Dan Scott.

Need we say more? An unlucky turn of events (or a deliberately-lit match?) lands Dan homeless and broke. While Nathan is on the road, he turns to his daughter-in-law for help. And what do ya know? Haley musters up enough forgiveness to open her doors to him. That’s right. Dan is staying in the Naley household, people. That can’t be good. Especially because…

10. Someone dies.

OK, so no one dies in the actual premiere (that would be uber lame), but there are some mysterious things happening around Haley. It looks like they may be setting up the storyline for Nathan’s kidnapping. But who dies? Don’t worry. “It’s not Chad,” Paul Johansson says.

Thanks for that.


How excited are you for the premiere?



‘One Tree Hill’ Season 9 is ‘darker and more naked’: Five things to expect from the emotional premiere

“One Tree Hill” fans, we had the unique opportunity to watch the Season 9 premiere tonight, in a room full of fans, with many of the series’ cast members sitting alongside us. Let’s just say that several hours later, there are still tears in our eyes — both from the episode and from the cast Q&A afterward.

We’ll give you a full rundown of the Q&A in a later article, but we couldn’t go to sleep without filling you in on some key details from the powerful episode. Here are five things you can expect from the season premiere:

1. A major death. The first minute of the episode made our hearts skip a beat, and not in a happy, romantic way. We saw images of nearly every one of our favorite characters hitting their absolute lowest points. Amongst the brutal snapshots, we see Haley (Bethany Joy Galeotti) identifying a body in a morgue. Obviously, we can’t tell you who dies, but we will tell you that it is a character who is very significant to the series and who we’ve known for years. (And, as Paul Johansson noted, it’s “not Chad.”)

2. Chris. Keller. Is. Glorious. Tyler Hilton is back with a flirty vengeance, and it’s like he never left. We don’t get a whole lot of information about how he’s spent the last decade, but we do get 100% genuine Chris Keller douchiness. He speaks in third person. He makes a play for Haley. (B-minus for effort, though, and she’s obviously not having it.) He drops some not-so-constructive criticism on Alex’s music. And. Yes. He sings. Sophia Bush dished that on Tyler’s first day back on set, many cast members stopped by even though they weren’t working that day, and they could feel that his presence was “reinvigorating” the show.

3. Daddy issues galore. As previously revealed, Brooke’s father Ted (Richard Burgi) comes back into town after being named the twins’ godfather. (We’re not quite sure why, especially because they choose to name Haley the godmother over Victoria, but… this is Tree Hill.) She’s beyond overjoyed to see him, despite the countless times he’s let her down, and it was a strong reminder of the teenage girl she once was, desperately wanting her parents to notice her. And, speaking of awesome fathers, Dan is back in the picture. When his diner burns down (in, um, an “accident”) he shows up asking Haley for a little kindness.

4. Clay is a man on the move. Clay’s big storyline this episode? He’s sleepwalking, which is causing a lot of worry for Quinn. While the scenes do seem lighthearted, based on the teaser, we’re thinking this is going to develop into some heavy stuff for the couple. “We really saw in Season 7 and 8 that I shine as an actor in sleeping scenes,” Rob Buckley said, very seriously. “So Mark is really good at throwing storylines in our strike zone, so you’ll notice I did a lot of power napping and sleeping in that episode, and there’s a lot more really heavy sleeping to come.”

5. Nathan and Haley remain adorable. Nathan has his buzz cut back, but we’re not only talking about his super-hotness. We’ll admit it — this might be a trying episode for the hardcore Naley shippers, because the Scotts are never actually in the same room together. Still, they prove that they’re more than capable of withstanding a little strain. It just goes to show how much they’ve grown and how much they’ve built since Haley went on tour while they were in high school. When we visited the set in September, Bethany Joy Galeotti told us, “Nathan and Haley are the homefront of the show. Mark wrote a lot toward those personalities.” They prove her right in this episode.

“It’s a little darker this season,” Mark Schwahn told us at the Q&A.

Sophia chimed in with, “Darker, and more naked.”

We’d say that accurately describes the episode. While it definitely feels like “One Tree Hill,” it’s a stronger, more confident version of the show. It’s very apparent that eliminating the “we could get canceled at any moment!” factor has driven everyone involved with the production to turn it up to eleven.

Aside from the crushing teaser, Season 9 begins at a comfortable pace, with joyful, hopeful moments aplenty. (Trust us, we were waiting for a car to go off a bridge at any moment.) Somehow, Tree Hill feels more real to us than ever, and the characters feel even more defined. Mark tells us that this is his favorite season yet, and we have a feeling it’ll be ours, too.

It all goes down January 11 at 8 p.m. EST on The CW. But you knew that already.


The official press release for One Tree Hill – Episode 9×01 – Know This, We Noticed

PRESS RELEASE: THE NINTH AND FINAL SEASON OF ONE TREE HILL WELCOMES NEW HOPES, CHALLENGES AND DANGERS — As Brooke (Sophia Bush) and Julian (Austin Nichols) begin to adjust to life with their new children, Haley (Bethany Joy Galeotti) and Nathan (James Lafferty) find themselves dealing with similar issues. Although they don’t know it yet, faces from the past threaten to interrupt plans for all their futures. Meanwhile, a mysterious problem arises for Clay (Robert Buckley) and Quinn (Shantel VanSanten). Paul Johansson, Stephen Colletti, and Tyler Hilton also star. The episode was written and directed by Mark Schwahn (#901).


One Tree Hill fans already mourning the fast-approaching conclusion of their beloved CW sudser (returning Jan. 11 at 8/7c), we’ve got just the thing to turn that frown upside down: free tickets to an advance screening of the ninth and final season premiere!

The fine folks over at The CW are hosting “An Evening With One Tree Hill” at The ArcLight Theater in Hollywood on Thursday, Jan. 5 at 7 pm, an event that begins with an advance screening of the season-opener and ends with a post-show Q&A (moderated by yours truly) featuring cast members Sophia Bush, Bethany Joy Galeotti, Austin Nichols, Shantel VanSanten, Stephen Colletti, Tyler Hilton, Paul Johansson and Tree Hill showrunner Mark Schwahn.


What: “An Evening with One Tree Hill”
 Thursday, January 5, 2012 @ 7:30pm
 The ArcLight Theater in Hollywood


#35 Robert Buckley, One Tree Hill

Rob made the TV’s 100 Sexiest Men of 2011 List over at Buddy TV Let’s say number 35 is the new number one

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Another milestone counting down to the end of an era here in Hollywood East. Today marked the start of the last five days of shooting for “One Tree Hill,” according to the show’s co-producer.

Black material covered the windows at the Karen’s Café set in downtown Wilmington as the cast and crew continued working on the show’s ninth and final season.

The end of the show has drawn plenty of fans to town, including one woman today who worked on a painting of storefront set.