Sad news for everyone who shipped the newly-teased Elle and Vivian romance
Last week (July 9), Legally Blonde actor Jessica Cauffiel recalled an alternate ending to the 2001 rom com, in which Elle (Reese Witherspoon) and her former nemesis Vivian (Selma Blair) got together romantically – or, it was insinuated at least.
“The first ending was Elle and Vivian in Hawaii in beach chairs, drinking margaritas and holding hands,” Cauffiel – who played Elle’s best friend Margot in the film – told The New York Times. “The insinuation was either they were best friends or they had gotten together romantically.”
Although fans were overjoyed at the possible LGBTQ+ spin, Legally Blonde’s writers have now quashed the rumours, revealing that they never wrote an alternate queer ending. Co-writer Karen McCullah responded to a tweet about the “original lesbian ending” with four brutal words: “This is not true.” When asked her source, she simply responded: “I wrote the movie. I’m in the picture you just posted. The actress quoted was incorrect.”
The film’s other co-writer Kirsten Smith has also confirmed McCullah’s statement, tweeting: “I wish it was true, they would have made a great couple.” The New York Times has since updated its article to read: “(Alanna Ubach, who played Serena McGuire) remembers this as well, but the screenwriters say they never wrote that ending.”
McCullah did reveal details of an Elle and Vivian-starring alternate ending, but it doesn’t hint at any romantic relationship. “We originally cut to a year later,” she told NYT, “Elle and Vivian were good friends, and Vivian’s now blonde. They had started the Blonde Legal Defense Club and were handing out fliers in the quad because that was the ending in Amanda’s manuscript.”
Witherspoon shared a behind-the-scenes photo of this ending on Instagram, as she celebrated the film’s 20th anniversary. “Playing Elle Woods was the role of a lifetime,” she wrote, “and I’m so honored to have been a part of sharing her story with you all. Every meme, graduation cap, musical number, halloween costume, and bend and snap has brought me so much JOY over these past two decades! I wonder... what will Elle do next?”
So the queer ending was never meant to be... sad! At least we still have Elle’s era-defining hot pink fashion.