Jennie Garth became an overnight star thanks to Beverly Hills, 90210, and now the actress is spilling secrets about the extra-curricular drama and rampant drug use that went on behind the scenes of the popular show.
The 41-year-old actress just published a tell-all memoir, Deep Thoughts From a Hollywood Blonde, that details how the young actors and actresses on the popular Fox show dealt with the fame that was thrust upon them.
In the book, Jennie Garth said the show blew up after Fox executives decided to air a special summer season. While other networks were airing reruns, Beverly Hills, 90210 found a huge audience that year.
"In just a matter of weeks, we went from being just another generic ensemble cast of any old prime-time drama to being … superstars," wrote Garth, who played Kelly Taylor on the show. "I don't think any of us were prepared for the stardom that was thrust upon us in this way. Thank God we had one another, because we were able to protect each other from the harm this kind of sudden fame can bring with it by staying close and huddling up and focusing on getting the job done…And it bonded us for life."
But Garth herself had a difficult time with the long hours and hectic schedules. She said at age 19, she began suffering panic attacks that caused her to become withdrawn and unable to leave her home before dark.
"I wouldn't say that I ever stepped over the line into full-blown agoraphobia, but I would say I definitely came close," she wrote.
The set itself was wild, Garth explained, with drugs easily accessible. She even said the show's production assistants became suppliers of sorts for the actors.
"They wouldn't have batted an eye if I asked for a bagel and a bump of coke, come to think of it, but I usually just had coffee," she reveals.
The show and the sudden fame almost never happened for Jennie Garth. She explains in the book that she was initially passed over during the casting process, but her agent was able to persist until Aaron Spelling himself agreed to meet with her.