Adam Brody has had his fair share of fame. At the age of 23, he launched into superstardom thanks to his role as Seth Cohen on the hit teen drama series “The O.C.” Brody and his fellow cast members, including Mischa Barton, Ben McKenzie and Rachel Bilson, became household names and were adored by fans all over the world. But with that kind of success comes attention, sometimes unwanted.
The stars of “The O.C.” were surrounded by whispers and rumors about their personal lives, as well as their reported “attitudes” on set. Although they were some of the biggest names of the early 2000s, they were also “young” and “naive,” as McKenzie told Entertainment Weekly in 2013, which led to some immature behavior, and many tabloid stories. A few of the actors escaped the “young Hollywood curse,” while others fell for its trap.
“You either spiral downwards forever and it probably doesn’t end up very well, or you realize at a certain point, ‘Hey, maybe [I] shouldn’t be doing that’ or ‘Maybe this doesn’t represent who I actually am or want to be.’ And, you know, I think I figured that out relatively quickly,” McKenzie explained.
Brody stuck with the show through its final episode on Feb. 22, 2007, and came out, all in all, just fine. Although his real-life romance with Bilson was the talk of the town for a few years, the actor admitted to The Huffington Post on AOL Build Wednesday that if the series aired today, things would have been a whole lot more crazy.
“That show came out in 2003, and in terms at how fast technology is moving ― well, maybe not, that’s a long time ago now, but still ― no Twitter, no TMZ. I think it would be so different now to be on something like that,” he explained when referencing how fame and the Hollywood culture has changed over the years. “You would be bombarded so much more and have so much less privacy. I still feel like I had a fair amount of privacy.”
Although he experienced the height of fandom with “The O.C.” Brody is clearly thankful for the experience. He understands that although celebrities may complain about the attention they receive, it’s definitely not all bad.
“I don’t envy people in that situation really, but then again, it’s still a good problem to have. It’s one of those things where I’m torn because on one hand you think, ‘Oh, paparazzi, they shouldn’t be allowed to bother these people.’ Myself included, but not nearly as much as some others. But at the same time you think, ‘But, cry me a river.’ We all should be so lucky and, like I said, I get it. I can’t expect anyone else to care,” the actor, who is now a dad to 1-year-old daughter Arlo Day with wife Leighton Meester, said.
The 36-year-old, who is starring on a new Crackle drama “StartUp,” tries to separate himself from the role that made him famous, but he also knows Seth Cohen will always be alive and well.
“It’s a happy accident, to me, that nothing has come to close to it,” Brody said of finding roles that differ from his “O.C.” character. “I don’t want to fall back on too much like schtick I’ve done before, but I tried to be very unschticky in [’StartUp’]. As much as possible, I tried to not ham it up or go for a joke too much. And then, also the tone is so different, the stakes are so heavy that it just naturally took care of itself. And even the filming style is so different that I didn’t have to worry about it.”
Watch Adam Brody’s full interview with AOL Build below and check out his new series, “StartUp,” co-starring Martin Freeman, debuting on Crackle Sept. 6.