Entertainment Weekly reunited the major players of the iconic teen drama to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the premiere, and the cast and producers shared behind-the-scenes stories, reflected on the show's legacy and even considered the chances of a reboot. But the biggest revelation from the reunion is that Katherine Heigl was considered for the part of Jen, the role that launched Michelle Williams' esteemed career.
Williamson said that pilot director Steve Miner brought her in to try out for the part, and though her audition was great, she wasn't right for the part. "She looked slightly older, I think, at that time, or something," Williamson said. "Even though she was younger, I just think she was more mature."
Heigl is actually about two years older than Williams, who was the youngest member of the core cast, and closer in age to James Van Der Beek, Joshua Jackson and Katie Holmes. But it is hard to imagine her as Jen Lindley. Heigl, of course, got her big break the following year on another WB show, Roswell.
The revelation that Katherine Heigl could have been on Dawson's Creek opens up a whole Sliding Doors scenario. If she had landed the role, would Busy Philips be her best friend and not Williams'? Would Katherine Heigl have four Oscar nominations while Michelle Williams was doing cat litter commercials?
Probably not, because there are differences of talent and temperament that make Katherine Heigl and Michelle Williams who they are today, but it's fun to think about.