22 years after Never Been Kissed hit theaters, Drew Barrymore had a mini-reunion on her daytime talk show where Michael Vartan shared a hilarious behind-the-scenes story about their characters’ kiss.
On Tuesday’s episode of The Drew Barrymore Show, the host introduced a clip of Vartan’s character, Sam Coulson, meeting Barrymore’s character, Josie, on the baseball mound to share her first kiss, one of the most memorable moments from the film.
“I just wish Michael Vartan could be here to live out that moment again,” Barrymore joked before Vartan jogged onto the set as “Don’t Worry Baby” by The Beach Boys started to play, the same song from the rom-com.
Vartan joined fellow Never Been Kissed cast members Molly Shannon and David Arquette on stage in front of the Paramount Pictures gate where the show is currently taping.
“I haven’t seen that clip in years and standing there I got emotional,” Vartan admitted, adding that fans always mention the film to him. “This movie’s been a huge part of my life.”
He then told a story about the charming kiss scene that not even Barrymore had heard before.
“So, I get up to the mound, we embrace, and we start kissing. And you really kissed me. I mean you really kissed me,” Vartan recalled. “I was not ready for it in the least. I’m a man. I was a very young man back then and, you know, I had feelings and…” he said trailing off as the audience laughed and applauded.
He said he was wearing loose slacks and thought, “‘This is going to be a disaster when they cut. I must preemptively end this.’”
Vartan continued, “So what I did is, in a panic, I just yelled ‘Cut’ and bent over and said, ‘Oh guys sorry, my back. I pulled my back out playing ball at lunch.’ Finally I was able to compose myself…You’re a very good kisser.”
Barrymore replied that Vartan was a single man at the time, so she went for it.
Vartan also revealed that he has kept the wrap gift Barrymore gave him, originally a small plant, for over 20 years. He added that he has kept a picture of the “now 15, 16 feet tall” plant on his phone in case he ever ran into her.
Barrymore described the gift as a “perfect metaphor” for the cult classic, which, she added, helped launch the careers of James Franco, Octavia Spencer, Jessica Alba, and John C. Riley. “It was a real dream cast. It just was lightning in a bottle and a moment that we all cherish,” Barrymore said.
Watch the clip below.