Jennie Garth Opens Up About Amanda Bynes: "I'd Love to Work With Her Again" (EXCLUSIVE)

Jennie also opened up to Distractify about her acting future: "Not a soap. Too much memory, I could never remember all those lines [now]."

Bianca Piazza - Author

Mar. 18 2024, Published 1:27 p.m. ET

Photo of 'What I like About You' costars Jennie Garth and Amanda Bynes in 2003
Source: Getty Images

Jennie Garth and Amanda Bynes in 2003

Most famous for playing Beverly Hills, 90210's legendary and nuanced hot blonde Kelly Taylor, Jennie Garth set aside her soap skills to work her funny muscles in 2002, joining the cast of the WB's sisterly opposites-attract sitcom What I Like About You. For four seasons, Jennie played the uptight, conservative older sister Valerie to the wild, unpredictable Holly, played by Amanda Bynes. Throughout their wacky NYC adventures and relationship sagas, it became clear that their chemistry was palpable.

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Whether they were throwing brownie batter at each other or fighting over a nostalgic teddy bear, Jennie and Amanda's impeccable comic timing brought seamless volleys and sisterly shenanigans, making What I Like About You an early-2000s gem.

While exclusively catching up with Distractify regarding her March 2024 partnership with Planet Oat plant-based milk, the 90210MG podcast host got candid about her experience working with Amanda two decades ago, whether they're still friends, and her favorite movie led by the beloved '90s Nickelodeon child star.

Photo of 'What I like About You' costars Jennie Garth and Amanda Bynes at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall 2009
Source: Getty Images

Jennie Garth and Amanda Bynes in 2009

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Jennie Garth praises former sitcom co-star Amanda Bynes's body of work: "I love her movies that she did."

Perhaps there is a child star curse. Unfortunately, seemingly out-of-character internet posts and strange public behavior have made Nickelodeon darling Amanda Bynes — who rose to fame while showing off her improv chops in hit shows like All That and The Amanda Show — a media spectacle since around 2010.

It was then that she tweeted, "I don't love acting anymore so I've stopped doing it." Three years later, in 2013, the Easy A star endured a public breakdown, which led to a 5150 psychiatric hold and a temporary conservatorship granted to her mother. In the midst of the conservatorship, Amanda was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

In a 2018 Paper feature, Amanda opened up about her substance abuse demons, including drugs like molly, ecstasy, and Adderall (in 2012, Amanda was arrested for driving under the influence), as well as her embarrassment over those chaotic Twitter rants.

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She started taking fashion classes at FIDM in 2014, even declaring in 2018 that she'd eventually return to acting "with excitement and hope for the best."

That's definitely something Jennie would love to witness, seeing that it serves Amanda, as she gushed about her former co-star's film work.

"She's done a lot of great work and movies that we all love," Jennie told Distractify. "What was the one with Paul Giamatti?" she questioned, leading to an eruption of laughter regarding the genius of 2002's Big Fat Liar. "When he's dancing and he gets into the pool! So good."

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Amanda's plans changed in December 2023. She launched the first episode of her short-lived podcast, Amanda Bynes & Paul Sieminski: The Podcast, that month, canceling it one week after its debut. As of February 2024, the Hairspray star is working on getting her manicurist license.

Jennie Garth and Amanda Bynes have both deemed 'What I Like About You' their favorite entertainment projects they've worked on.

In a February 2024 Cameo posted to TikTok, Amanda answered a fan's question about her favorite film or TV project she's worked on.

"I would probably say What I like About You. That TV show was super fun, I loved working with Jennie Garth and Leslie Grossman, Wesley Jonathan, and Simon Rex. It was such a great experience," Amanda shared.

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Jennie Garth told Entertainment Tonight something similar in 2019:

"That was my favorite job. Just being able to do comedy, multi-camera comedy like that, I loved it so much,” she said. “It was a great experience and I would love nothing more than to revisit that show.”

Generally speaking, Jennie exclusively told us that she'd love to get back into comedy acting.

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"I'd love to do another sitcom. That's a great lifestyle for me, because it's like banker's hours. You actually don't work your entire — you get to have a life outside of your work. And I love doing comedy so much," she told Distractify.

As for if Jennie and Amanda stayed friends, they seemingly grew apart, but the love is still there.

"I haven't talked to her, no," Jennie told ET. "But we're like soul sisters."

We specifically asked Jennie to touch on Amanda's Cameo confession.

"I felt very honored and sad because I would love to work with her again, and I don't think that that's on her docket right now. I just pray for her and hope that she's happy and healthy. And that's all I can do," Jennie tells us, sincerity radiating from her.

Perhaps nothing can break a sisterly bond.

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