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Blake Lively: A modern Grace Kelly in talent, grace, and beauty


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Blake Lively’s birthday is upon us. To celebrate her twenty years on our screens, and thirty-one years of life, we look at her most iconic role and, of course, we’ll compare this to her next highly anticipated role in an upcoming film.  

It’s next to impossible to discuss the joys of Blake Lively without mentioning one, very important name: Serena Van Der Woodsen. The blonde powerhouse was on our screens in Gossip Girl (2007-2012) for years of intriguing political scandal, ambitious social endeavours, and catastrophically chaotic mistakes that set us laughing until we cramped and cringing back into our sofas, and, sometimes, watching from behind our hands. Lively’s portrayal as Serena was a standout role.

What made Serena so appealing for the audience was her imperfection. True, Serena in the Gossip Girl universe was renowned for being an idolised socialite who was also down to earth and cool, and it would be easy to assume that that's all there is to Serena's character. Not so. Throughout the series, Blake Lively's performance enhances and brings a depth to Serena that would be sorely missed had the role gone to any other actress. Able to play Serena as a bit air-headed and silly during the less serious episodes, Lively was also perfectly able to carry a heavy weight for those moments where the series turned rather dark.

A memorable example of this is midway through season one, when Serena finally breaks down and confesses to Blair that she "killed someone". Whether this is true or not, you'll have to watch and find out, but the way Lively performed in that moment was breathtaking. Her eyes seemed to actually darken, and her panicked and somehow numb face managed to get audience's pulses racing.

In lighter episodes, Lively embodies Serena with equal ease and talent, whether it's rocking out to Lynyrd Skynyrd's 'Free Bird' on Guitar Hero, or spending most of the flashback Thanksgiving special happily tipsy. Even these fun and relaxing moments of emotional respite showcase Lively's range of acting ability.

The trailer for her upcoming film, A Simple Favour (2018), certainly looks just as pulse-racing. Lively's character, Emily, seems to be just as enigmatic as Serena; Glamorous, kind, but somehow almost unapproachable, Emily seems to be hiding something big and juicy. The casual and well-to-do, cocktail-drinking heroine feels almost like a 1920's silver screen femme fatale, perfectly dressed and seemingly unfazeable.

It looks to be the perfect role for Lively, who has shown she can handle playing a character idolised by those around her whilst also retaining realism and subtlety. Once again, Blake Lively is paired opposite a petite brunettem female character - Leighton Meester in Gossip Girl, and now Anna Kendrick in A Simple Favour - a casting technique often used to mutually compliment the actors' appearance, in this case pairing Kendrick against Lively's versatile blonde hair and tall stature. 


As well as portraying some brilliantly inscrutable roles, Lively herself is somewhat mystifying. A browse of her press releases and social media accounts shows a usually smiling and calm person. Her parents were in the acting and talent business, and her husband Ryan Reynolds (you might know of him) is also an esteemed actor. Lively clearly fits into the entertainment industry with ease - and her characters are often believable and enticing, which explains her multiple Teen Choice and Jupiter Awards, among others, across her acting career.

Whilst using her social media to promote her new film, Blake has previously posted her support of the #TimesUp movement, emotive poetry by Jasmin Kaur, and references to her role on Gossip Girl. With a million Twitter followers, and perhaps more impressively, twenty-two million Instagram followers, Blake Lively clearly has a large and loving audience. And so, we wish Blake Lively a very happy birthday!

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