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Blake Lively defended by Colleen Hoover amid mixed reaction to unexpected It Ends with Us appearance

The Gossip Girl actress stars alongside Jane the Virgin actor Justin Baldoni is the highly-anticipated book-to-movie adaptation

Blake Lively looks cool in a leather dress
Beatriz Colon
Beatriz Colon - New York
Online News WriterNew York
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Colleen Hoover is standing by her decision to cast Blake Lively and Justin Baldoni as the stars of the upcoming book-to-movie adaptation of one of her most popular books, It Ends with Us.

Though the best-selling author has a massive and loyal fan base that rush to read every one of her romance novels, many haven't been pleased with the casting of the highly-anticipated movie.

While both Blake and Justin also have dedicated fans that love them for their roles on their beloved shows Gossip Girl and Jane the Virgin, respectively, the discrepancy between their ages and those of the characters they portray sparked some backlash.

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Per Goodreads, the book follows Lily, a recent college graduate who moves to Boston and starts a relationship with an older neurosurgeon, Ryle Kincaid, who has a "disturbing" aversion to relationships and a "no dating rule."

Though they begin a turbulent romance, everything is put to risk by the reappearance of Lily's first love, Atlas Corrigan, who will be played by Brandon Sklenar.

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Blake and Justin's role in the movie was first announced back in January, and now Colleen is explaining why she stood by the decision to have the actress, 35, play 23-year-old Lily, and the actor, 39, play the 30-year-old neurosurgeon.

Blake Lively and Justin Baldoni are seen filming "It Ends With Us" on May 25, 2023 in Hoboken, New Jersey© Getty
Blake and Justin on set

During the Book Bonanza annual book festival, Today reports that the author explained: "Back when I wrote It Ends With Us, the new adult [genre] was very popular," adding: "You were writing college-age characters. That's what I was contracted to do."

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She then added: "I didn't know that neurosurgeons went to school for 50 years. There's not a 20-something neurosurgeon."

Blake Lively is seen filming "It Ends With Us" on May 25, 2023 in Hoboken, New Jersey© Getty
The star is a redhead in the new movie

Colleen noted: "As I started making this movie, I'm like, 'We need to age them out because I messed up,'" before admitting: "So that's my fault."

Blake Lively films with Brandon Sklenar on set of It Ends With Us© Getty
Blake filming opposite Brandon on set

Since filming on the project began and photos from the set went viral online, fans have also raised concerns over Blake's eclectic outfits for her character, but Colleen again maintained fans have nothing to worry about.

She said: "You've seen a couple of outfits that are completely out of context. I'm not worried about it."

Blake Lively looks lovely in plaid as she returns to work © Getty
The movie details a turbulent relationship

"I don't remember describing outfits at all," she added, before maintaining: "I don't care what they have on. In my head, it's about the conversation they're having and the story."

Blake Lively at Cannes, 2016© Getty
Fans should never worry that Blake will fail them in the fashion department

She assured fans she is "extremely happy" with how the movie is progressing – Justin is also directing it – and revealed she has already gotten emotional over some of the cuts she's been able to see.

"I know that I write emotional books but I'm not an emotional person. And I cried so much on set," she confessed, adding: "You guys are going to be so happy. I'm extremely happy and now my expectations are up and I'm going to keep them there."

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