Top 10 Things You Never Knew About Lizzie McGuire

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Top 10 Things You Never Knew About Lizzie McGuire

VOICE OVER: Phoebe de Jeu WRITTEN BY: Val Namaki
You've seen every episode, but we bet you didn't know these things about "Lizzie McGuire." Our countdown includes the writers' lives, the failed reboot, the bra episode, and more!
Transcript

Top 10 Things You Didn't Know About Lizzie McGuire


Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Lizzie McGuire.

For this list, we’ll be looking at little-known facts about this Disney Channel show.

Which of these behind-the-scenes facts surprised you most? Let us know in the comments below!

#10: The Failed Reboot


When Disney and Hilary Duff announced they were rebooting “Lizzie McGuire,” everyone was thrilled. The plan was to follow Lizzie as she navigated adulthood. Two episodes of the show were even filmed! But disaster struck when creator Terri Minsky was fired due to "creative differences." Soon after, we learned that the network felt the show’s content was too mature for Disney+. However, making sure the character remained just as relatable as a grown-up was a priority for Duff. She wanted the fans who grew up with Lizzie - now adults themselves - to feel seen. She even asked to take the reboot to Hulu, but to no avail! The series was unfortunately scrapped in 2020. This is NOT what dreams were made of!!

#9: The Writers’ Lives


“Lizzie McGuire” was full of plot points that felt raw, fresh, and timely. It’s part of what made the show so special. Apparently, a lot of that magic came from the fact that the gang’s adventures were based in reality. Nina Bargiel, who was one of the show’s writers, revealed that they often drew from their own experiences when crafting storylines. For instance, “One of the Guys” was about her athletic talent and the gender dynamics that surfaced as a result! Similarly, “Lizzie and Kate’s Excellent Adventure” and “A Gordo Story” also arose from Bargiel’s life. It’s no wonder we all felt like Lizzie McGuire growing up!

#8: The Making of Ethan Craft


Ethan Craft was the dreamy cool guy that Lizzie had a major crush on. He wasn't the sharpest tool in the shed, but Ethan was undoubtedly a kind-hearted person. Funnily enough, his character was originally entirely different. In fact, Ethan Craft was not supposed to be the guy Lizzie pined for! He was actually going to be depicted as more of a mean athlete. In fact, there was another character who was supposed to give our protagonist butterflies. But when that didn't work out, they reworked the concept to give Ethan Craft a more substantial part in the show. We are so glad they did!

#7: Hilary Duff's Audition


After being fired from a show called "Daddio," Duff wanted to quit the business and leave Los Angeles altogether. So when she reluctantly auditioned for "Lizzie McGuire," she didn’t do a great job. Luckily it didn't matter, because the people in the room could see that she was special. As casting director Robin Lippin put it, "there was something so appealing about Hilary that even when she screwed up, you still really liked her, and you were rooting for her.” Further, executive producer Stan Rogow attributed Duff's approachable personality for Lizzie's popularity among viewers. In other words, the character was relatable because the actress was!

#6: Hilary Duff's Outfits


Though Duff initially struggled in her audition, her clothes helped set her apart. Much like the character she would famously go on to play, the actress showed up to the auditions in quirky and unique outfits. She always had something fresh and exciting up her sleeve. As such, the suits kept wanting to see more and more of her - and her clothes. And she didn’t disappoint! Once she was cast, Duff’s fashion sense flowed into Lizzie McGuire’s. According to the show's costume designers, Duff had a keen eye for fashion and wasn't afraid to try new things. As such, she helped shape the character’s style in pretty incredible ways!

#5: Stevie Sanchez


Once “Lizzie McGuire” ended, the focus shifted to a spin-off series. We were set to follow Miranda’s little sister Stevie Sanchez through middle school. And she was even going to have her very own cartoon character along for the ride! In other words, she could have been the next generation’s Lizzie McGuire. Amazingly, the actress who was slated to play Stevie Sanchez was none other than Selena Gomez! Sadly, the show never saw the light of day. However, Gomez got her chance to shine on the Disney channel a few years later as Alex on “Wizards of Waverly Place.” When one door closes, another one opens!

#4: Little Lizzie's Creation


“Lizzie McGuire” went through a number of conceptual changes before it hit our television screens. Terri Minsky’s original concept was titled “What’s Lizzie Thinking?”, and was set in high school. But there’s more! Mini Lizzie, the animated version of the tween living inside her head, almost didn’t exist. Initially, they considered using voice-overs to capture Lizzie’s thoughts. Needless to say, that would not have had the same impact as the animated figure we all know and love. She helped the audience understand Lizzie because she brought her internal monologue to life. Mini Lizzie made the show extra engaging, and became a character in her own right in the process!

#3: A Different Lizzie McGuire


When the role of Lizzie McGuire was being cast, one of the stars in contention was none other than Lindsay Lohan. Though she didn’t get the part, the actress went on to star in Disney's "Get a Clue," and in fan-favorite films like "Mean Girls." Another starlet who was considered for the role was Sara Paxton, who went on to play the titular mermaid in “Aquamarine!” Funnily enough, she later landed a one-episode guest spot on the show! Of course, the part of Lizzie McGuire ultimately went to the one and only Hilary Duff, and the rest was Disney Channel history!

#2: The Bra Episode


“Lizzie McGuire” made waves when it depicted Lizzie and Miranda’s experience buying their first bra. The episode, titled “Between a Rock and a Bra Place” was honest, funny, and stunningly accurate. It’s such a classic that the cast recently did a virtual table read of the episode, during which the writers shared some behind-the-scenes details about its conception. Apparently, the network had some specific rules that complicated matters. For instance, there were limits on how often the word “bra” could be used, and around showing the garments up close! Plus, they insisted on the bra plot being countered by a "boy" narrative. Thankfully the writers made it all work, and the iconic episode was born!

#1: The Sequel That Never Was


The “Lizzie McGuire” franchise, from the show to its movie, was hugely successful for Disney. In fact, there were talks to keep it going with a second film. Not only that, they wanted to head to high school with the gang in a new show. But after conflicts over money persisted, the plans shuttered on less than ideal terms. At the same time, stories pegging Hilary Duff as a difficult star began emerging. But it was no coincidence. According to her mom and manager, it was a smear campaign orchestrated by Disney. She said: “In my wildest dreams, I cannot imagine adults beating up on a 15-year-old kid in the papers like they have.” Fortunately, Duff made it past the drama, and her career thrived!
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