It’s official. The Blake Lively Era has begun. As the star of Gossip Girl and Cloverfield, Lively joins the ranks of Heidi Montag and Ellen Page in the next wave of up-and-coming starlets. You know she dishes gossip and you know she runs from weird New York monsters, but here’s 20 things you didn’t know about Blake Lively:
1. Blake played soccer as a little kid. And kinda sucked. “They would never let me kick the ball around, because I guess I wasn't very good at that,” she said. “I was just like tall, lanky, and clumsy.”
2. As a kid, Blake had a “huge crush” on Leonardo DiCaprio and Justin Timberlake.
3. She’s unfazed by fame. Blake said, “Stars really are like anyone else. At the end of the day, Brad Pitt poops – as handsome as he may be – and so does Angelina Jolie. I'm still baffled by how odd this job is."
4. She might have gotten a nose job. Rumors swirled that after filming Accepted, Blake went in for cosmetic surgery. But she told OK! Magazine: “People want to talk. They want to create negative things about you and your life, make up things. You can’t look at it. You can’t let them affect you.”
5. She used to want to be an interior decorator. Lively told Teen magazine: “Baking and flower arranging have always been my favorite hobbies. I love Martha Stewart.”
6. Her entire family—two sisters, two brothers, mother, father—are in the entertainment industry. Most of them act.
7. …But she wanted no part of it. Blake owes her career to her brother, who forced her to attend auditions, which led to her breakout role in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.
8. In Sisterhood, her character’s father is actually her real-life dad.
9. As hard as it is to believe, the fake-sounding “Blake Lively” is actually her real name.
10. In fact, there’s a story behind the name. Blake said: “My grandma's brother's name was Blake, and my sister wrote it down when she was reading a family tree. And they said, "If it's a boy, we'll name him Blake, and if it's a girl, we'll name her Blakely." And everybody thought I was going to be a boy, and then I came out and I was a girl. And they had already been calling me Blake for months because they were positive I was going to be a boy. And they had been calling me Blake for so long, they just [kept it].”
11. She might have trouble with her co-workers. According to the NY Daily News, “Leighton Meester and Blake Lively avoid each other like the plague while castmates choose sides.”
12. In person, she likes to giggle.
13. Blake can get casual. Even though her Gossip Girl character, Serena van der Woodsen, doesn’t leave her high-rise without wearing $17,000 worth of clothing, in real life Blake showed up to the Letterman show in casual jeans and tee.
14. She claims she’s not dating her co-star, on-screen boyfriend Kelly Blatz. “Any male friend is obviously a 'romance alert,'” Blakde said, “But I've always been friends with boys my whole life.”
15. She’s fearless. Of her high school experience, Blake said, “I can't sing or dance to save my life, and I was in the #1 show choir in the nation--all you do is sing and dance. And I was always like front and center singing as loud as I could, because I loved it. I was so passionate about it.”
16. Prior to Sisterhood, her only role was playing the “tooth fairy” in Sandman, a film directed by her father, Ernie Lively.
17. Blake was the only actual bona-fide teenager in Sisterhood.
18. She was an over-achiever. In high school, she was a cheerleader. And in the choir. And the senior class president.
19. Blake loves Guitar Hero. In fact, her addiction is so potent, the Gossip Girl writers even wrote in a scene of her character playing Guitar Hero.
20. A poll by Victoria Secret declared Blake Lively “Sexiest Newcomer.” And who are we to argue?