Let’s go back… back to the beginning, back to when “Laguna Beach” tore friends, families and our great nation apart over the eternal Team Kristin or Team LC divide.
Nearly 20 years and many more Ste-PHENs ago, MTV first introduced the reality TV series following a group of high school students, including Kristin Cavallari and Lauren Conrad, who were locked in a multi-season (and heavily edited) feud over a boy named Stephen Colletti.
For the first time ever, all three former co-stars sat down and unpacked their love triangle on Cavallari and Colletti’s “Back to the Beach” reunion podcast.
“Watching it was so much worse than I imagined it would be,” Conrad said, noting that she had never seen a single full episode of the series. “It was really embarrassing.”
Ranking highest on the cringe scale for Conrad calling Cavallari a “slut” for dancing on the bar during the show’s infamous first-season cast trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
“My biggest regret was that I saw that, called you a bitch. I’m so sorry,” Conrad told Cavallari, who said she accepted the apology.
“When I saw it, it was my, like, ‘Oh, I couldn’t believe I did that.’ Because I think where I am now, I would never call another woman that or girl,” Conrad continued. “And that, for me, was the most embarrassing moment. I thought, “Oh gross.”
Cavallari regretted calling her former co-star the same name in another episode, admitting she also “said some really stupid things.”
She added: “When I see it now, I think, ‘I wasn’t sure at all. I was actually so unsure. And I took it out of you in many ways. And I’m so sorry for that.”
While both admitted there was a grain of truth to their feud, they agreed the cameras “kept it alive and made it a lot worse than it ever would have been.” While MTV portrayed Colletti in a simultaneous romantic relationship with both women, he insists they never overlapped.
“At no time when we were together, you know, would I go out on you like that,” Colletti said of his real-life romance with Cavallari at the time. “And they really paint [it like] that’s what I do throughout the show – which I have a huge problem with.”
During the show’s first season, Conrad actually continued various other relationships, including a fling with co-star Talan Torriero, which was never shown on camera.
“What’s funny is I think Season 1 is our senior year? I had multiple boyfriends during this time so I feel so bad for them if they ever see this!” she revealed.
“Laguna Beach” ended its run in 2006 after three seasons — the final installment featuring neither Conrad nor Cavallari. However, both would eventually star in “The Hills,” a spinoff that originally followed Conrad’s life in Los Angeles. Cavallari later replaced Conrad midway through the show’s fifth season, but the two never appeared on camera together.
Conrad has since launched various businesses, as well as starting a family with her husband, William Tell. The two remain in Laguna Beach, California, with their two sons.
Cavallari, meanwhile, returned to reality television with his E! series “Very Cavallari,” which ran for three seasons and featured her then-husband, football star Jay Cutler. The former couple, who share three children, have since divorced and announced their separation in 2020 after 10 years together.