Just as Ted Mosby has grown while telling his children the story of how he met their mother, so has CBS’ “How I Met Your Mother.” Gathered Thursday night at the Paley Center for Media in Beverly Hills to celebrate “Mother’s” 100th episode, stars Josh Radnor (Ted), Jason Segel (Marshall), Cobie Smulders (Robin), Neil Patrick Harris (Barney) and Alyson Hannigan (Lily) as well as executive producers/co-creators Carter Bays and Craig Thomas and executive producer/director Pamela Fryman shared several stories, including how the cast genuinely click as friends.
Starting with when Hannigan crossed paths with friend Harris during network auditions for “Mother,” the cast treated the packed house with a hint of what a day on their set would be like — “We’ll just spend hours doing cat puns,” Hannigan said. From that point forward, no response was sacred as “litter,” “paws,” “catamarans,” “purr-fect” and more were all worked into the conversation.
Topics bounced around the panel like the random yet serialized nature of the show and included Bays’ reveal that series lothario Barney Stinson was initially envisioned as a large “John Belushi-type” until Harris walked in. The role of Lily Eriksen, however, was always meant for Hannigan, who spent six seasons playing Willow on Joss Whedon’s “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”
As for when Ted will — finally — meet the mother, Thomas was coy:
“We always feel like a Bush-era secretary when asked that question,” he joked.
“We like the idea that he doesn’t have a kid yet but he’s already a dad,” Bays added.
“If we keep waiting, science will catch up and there’s no reason that Marshall won’t be the mother,” Segel joked.
“How I Met Your Mother’s” 100th episode airs Monday.