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10 Shocking Behind The Scenes Secrets About ‘One Tree Hill’

From what Hilarie Burton Morgan has to say about her time on the show to who took what from set, these facts are must reads!


Filled with basketball, half brothers and unforgettable love stories, One Tree Hill was certainly full of drama — and so was life for its cast off-camera! We have compiled the ten best One Tree Hill facts, from whose haircut was widely hated to whose tattoo had to be added in. Keep scrolling for all of that and more!

MUST READ: Catch Up With the ‘One Tree Hill’ Cast Over 20 Years Later!

1. Hilarie Burton Morgan reveals why she left

Hilarie Burton Morgan (2004)
Hilarie Burton Morgan (2004) CW

Hilarie Burton Morgan, who played Peyton Sawyer on the show, says she was sexually harassed by series creator Mark Schwahn throughout her time on the show. It ultimately led to her leaving in season 6.

Burton also recently recalled the time Schwahn wrote himself into the show so he could have time alone with Burton. “I wasn’t speaking to him in real life, and so he wrote himself into the episode [season 5 episode 13, “Echoes, Silence, Patience, and Grace”] of me hugging him,” Burton said. “It was so creepy.”

She regularly opens up about the trauma she endured on her podcast Drama Queens, which she co-hosts with Sophia Bush and Bethany Joy Lenz.

2. The cast regularly hosts basketball games: One Tree Hill facts

one tree hill facts : James Lafferty and Chad Michael Murray (2004)
James Lafferty and Chad Michael Murray (2004) CW

Ever since the show’s first season, the cast and crew have hosted a basketball game to raise money for a charity of their choice. It has recently expanded into them opening up certain parts of the set (like the club Tric) to fans and the cast posing for photos.

The most recent fundraiser took place on May 10, 2024, to raise money for V Foundation for Cancer Research.  

I am a cancer survivor and have experienced the radiation and crippling anxiety that comes with a cancer diagnosis, so I am happy to be a part of this amazing event to combat the brutal beast that is cancer,” cast member Craig Sheffer, who portrays Keith Scott in the series, said in a statement.

3. The Ravens basketball court has a special meaning

James Lafferty and Chad Michael Murray (2004)
James Lafferty and Chad Michael Murray (2004) CW

The court where The Ravens basketball team plays is the same one where Michael Jordan played while in college. It is located in North Carolina.

4. The episode titles were chosen for a reason: One Tree Hill facts

'The One Tree' Hill Cast (2006)
‘The One Tree’ Hill Cast (2006) CW

Every episode title is either the name of a song or recorded album. Often, the chosen song would be featured in that particular episode, as well.

5. Sophia Bush faced backlash for her hair

Sophia Bush (2007) one tree hill facts
Sophia Bush (2007) CW

In season 3, Sophia Bush’s Brooke Davis debuts a long, straight black haircut with bangs, and while viewers loved it, Mark Schwahn did not.

“He [Schwahn] goes, ‘Who the f*ck told you you could cut bangs? You know who had bangs? All the f*ck*ng cheerleaders in high school who never wanted to have sex with me,'” Bush said in her podcast, Drama Queens.

6. Many actors took momentos from set: One Tree Hill facts

Bethany Joy Lenz and James Lafferty (2007)
Bethany Joy Lenz and James Lafferty (2007) CW

After filming wrapped, both Bethany Joy Lenz (Haley James-Scott) and James Lafferty (Nathan Scott), took things from the set. Joy Lenz took home the Julius Ceaser book that appeared in the first episode, and Lafferty took the Raven Jersey he wore in the pilot as well as the NS23 shoes.

MUST READHallmark Star Bethany Joy Lenz Opens Up About Self-Care, Her Latest Rom-Com and More (EXCLUSIVE)

7. Only four cast members appeared in both the pilot and finale

Bethany Joy Lenz and James Lafferty (2007) one tree hill facts
Bethany Joy Lenz and James Lafferty (2007) CW

Despite having a rather large starring cast, only four people appeared in the show’s first and last episodes: Bethany Joy Lenz (Haley James-Scott), James Lafferty (Nathan Scott), Lee Norris (Mouth McFadden) and Antwon Tanner (Skills).

8. Hillarie Burton Morgan lived across the street from the set

Hillarie Burton Morgan and Sophia Bush (2007)
Hillarie Burton Morgan and Sophia Bush (2007) CW

While filming was going on, Burton Morgan rented out an apartment across the street from the Karen’s Cafe set. In fact, she’d often invite the cast and crew over to hang out if they were stuck on set for long periods of time.

9. Chad Michael Murray’s tattoo was written into the show

Chad Michael Murray (2004) one tree hill facts
Chad Michael Murray (2004) one tree hill facts CW

In season 1, Lucas Scott (Michael Murray) is seen getting a Chinese symbol tattooed on his shoulder. Michael Murray has this tattoo in real life and it was added into the show so they wouldn’t have to continue to cover it up for filming.

MUST READChad Michael Murray: From Young ’00s Teen Heartthrob to Hallmark Hunk to Hollywood Star

10. The show was filmed in Honey Grove, Texas for a reason

Hillarie Burton Morgan and Bethany Joy Lenz (2004)
Hillarie Burton Morgan and Bethany Joy Lenz (2004) CW

In season 4 episode 17, the gang travels to Honey Grove, Texas. The cast and crew actually traveled and filmed there in real life, having won a contest put on by Sunkist in which towns could submit videos inviting the cast and crew to visit. Honey Grove won, and One Tree Hill was filmed there.

For all things One Tree Hill, click here!

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