In a year that has brought us rebooted versions of ‘Full House’, ‘Absolutely Fabulous’ and ‘Bridget Jones’s Diary’, not to mention the big screen debut of David Brent, it seems only fitting that 2016 should end with a reboot of ‘Gilmore Girls’.
All of the original cast is back for the four new feature-length episodes, which are now streaming on Netflix, but it’s not just the main characters you should be keeping an eye out for.
Proving that even the smallest of parts can help an actor on their journey to stardom, a host of famous faces starred in supporting roles on ‘Gilmore Girls’ throughouts its initial seven-series run, with stars from both the big and small screen who are now household names appearing on the show early on in their career.
Here are just 12 of the stars who had small parts in ‘Gilmore Girls’ before they were famous…
Clearly a master of transformation even before he proved his talent for versatility in ‘Family Guy’, ‘American Dad’ and ‘The Cleveland Show’, Seth actually played not one but two roles in ‘Gilmore Girls’.
In 2002, he played Zach, a student who graduates alongside Lorelai in the imaginatively-titled season two episode, ‘Lorelai’s Graduation Day’. A year later, he returned as a lawyer, but in voice only.
Seth’s ‘Family Guy’ wife Alex Borstein also appeared in a handful of ‘Gilmore Girls’ episodes, playing surly harp player, Drella.
As the story goes, Alex was the original choice to play Lorelai’s hapless best friend and confidante Sookie, but ultimately lost the role when her ‘MADtv’ contract prevented her from appearing in both shows. Fortunately that didn’t exactly stop her success, as she’s currently in her 16th season voicing Lois Griffin.
‘Gilmore Girls’ fans will remember Chad’s early appearances in the show’s first two seasons, playing Rory’s entitled and spoilt classmate Tristan DuGrey, responsible for her infamous nickname, Mary.
Tristan’s character was written out at the end of series two, when Chad signed a new deal to appear in a little show called ‘One Tree Hill’.
But Chad isn’t the only teen heartthrob of the 2000s to have made an early appearance in ‘Gilmore Girls’.
In the year before he became famous worldwide as Seth Cohen in ‘The OC’, Adam played the love interest to Rory’s best friend, Lane, who also plays guitar in her band. He recently starred in an episode of ‘New Girl’, and now plays Nick Talman in the new show ‘StartUp’.
In the show’s final season (pre-Netflix, that is) Rory falls in with a new crowd at Yale who she meets at an art show. Among them is Lucy, played by Krysten Ritter, in what was at that time her biggest appearance to date.
Krysten played Lucy in eight episodes, but is now best known for playing the titular character in the hit Netflix and Marvel Comics collaboration, ‘Jessica Jones’.
We know, right?
Long before he achieved huge success as Don Draper in ‘Mad Men’, Jon arrived in Stars Hollow for one episode, where he played Lorelai’s date, Peyton Sanders.
In what we presume was a case of producers underestimating Jon’s future star power, the characters’ date did not go well, and Peyton was never seen nor heard from again. Jon Hamm, meanwhile… well, he was.
Jane was on the cusp of her big break when she made an appearance in the first series of ‘Gilmore Girls’ so tiny, she appeared on the billing as simply Nurse.
Just a few years later, ‘The 40-Year-Old Virgin’, ‘Arrested Development’ and ‘The West Wing’, to name just a handful, all came knocking, before she landed her breakthrough role as Sue Sylvester in ‘Glee’.
Yep, before he started doling out advice as Ron Swanson in ‘Parks And Recreation’, Nick swung by ‘Gilmore Girls’ to play Jackson Belleville’s smarmy brother, Beau.
His visit to Stars Hollow was a flying one (though he did manage to squeeze in an unwanted advance towards Lorelai in that time), but he obviously struck a chord with viewers, as two years later he was back on the scene for a second appearance.
In 2001, Brenda played Eva in one episode of ‘Gilmore Girls’, another member of the Booster club with Lorelai.
Although she might not be immediately recognisable, sitcom fans will certainly know her voice, as she would later go on to narrate ‘Desperate Housewives’ as Mary-Alice Young.
He might have gone on to enjoy great success as Hiro, one of the leads in ‘Heroes’, but Masi’s brief appearance in ‘Gilmore Girls’ right at the beginning of his acting career is not one that stuck in our mind for long.
Masi starred as Philosophy Student a (you guessed it!) philosophy student, who gets into a debate with Rory at Yale.
Max is probably best known to sitcom-lovers as the douchey-but-ultimately-loveable Schmidt in ‘New Girl’, a role he’s now been playing for the past half-decade.
However, his single appearance in ‘Gilmore Girls’ is definitely less well-known. Max starred in one episode in 2003 as Luke, one of the attendees at Dean’s bachelor party.
Not exactly a guest appearance, Melissa was one of the show’s central characters right from the off, and throughout its original seven series.
Still, even despite being one of the most important players in ‘Gilmore Girls’, no one would have guessed she’d eventually go on to become the highest-paid actress in the world, famously starring in huge films like ‘Bridesmaids’, ‘Spy’ and the recent ‘Ghostbusters’ remake.
‘Gilmore Girls: Seasons’ is now available on Netflix.