Pretty Little Liars has staged sensational surprises in nearly every single episode over the last three seasons, but the biggest shocker to date happened off screen as it was announced on April 30 that ABC Family’s recently announced spin-off was bringing Tyler Blackburn’s Caleb along for the Ravenswood ride.
Now, for the first time, PLL executive producer and Ravenswood co-creator Marlene King is exclusively revealing why Hanna’s hottie was tapped to front the new series.
“In terms of the mythology of Ravenswood, there is a reason his character was chosen,” King tells ETonline. “Caleb has an ambiguous past. He doesn’t know as much about where he comes from compared to the other [characters] and we’re going to use that as we unfold the Ravenswood story.”
Once fans got over the initial shock, thoughts — and Twitter trending topics — immediately turned to the following question: “OMG!!! What does this mean for Haleb?!?!?!?!” Turns out, Ashley Benson had the exact same thought after finding out her scene partner was packing up his laptop and amazing conditioner.
“I was so sad,” Benson recalled of hearing the big news. “This is the thing, I’m so happy for Tyler, he deserves it so much, but he’s like my other half! He’s just amazing. When the day comes to shoot his last scene, I’m not going to be able to do it. I mean, I don’t want to give him away to these other people. But, I talked to Marlene about [how Caleb will be written off PLL] and I’m excited for people to see that because I’m pretty happy with how she told me their story would end.”
So what did Marlene tell Ashley? You know I got that answer. “Hanna and Caleb are such a great couple and we’ve designed this beautiful Casablanca moment for them,” King teased. “Hanna really gives Caleb permission to leave Rosewood and, basically, go to this other show [laughs]. I hope our fans embrace it as much as we’ve embraced it as writers. That’s important to us.”