Sarah Michelle Gellar Reflects on 20th Anniversary of 'Buffy'

"While we knew the potential, I don’t think any of us saw the lasting impact our show would have," actress says

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer,' star Sarah Michelle Gellar reflected on the show and its lasting impact. Credit: WB Television/Photofest

On March 10th, 1997, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, a TV series based on the beloved 1992 film, premiered on the WB, with the show becoming a cult classic in its own right. To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Buffy's WB debut, star Sarah Michelle Gellar reflected on the show and its lasting impact in an Instagram post.

"20 years ago today, I had the greatest privilege to bring Buffy to your TV screens for the first time," the actress wrote. "It was a long and challenging road to get there. First the movie, then a passed over pilot presentation, and eventually a mid season time slot on a little known network. That first season, we liked to think of ourselves as the little show that could. While we knew the potential, I don’t think any of us saw the lasting impact our show would have."

Buffy the Vampire Slayer, one of Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Shows of All Time, ran for seven seasons and 144 episodes before it concluded in 2003; the series also launched the spinoff Angel as well as a "Season Eight" comic book, written by Buffy creator Joss Whedon, that continued the Buffy saga after the WB series ended.

"As an actor, you wish for that one role where you can leave your mark and forever be remembered, with Buffy I got so much more," Gellar continued. "She's a feminist challenge to gender hierarchy. Buffy may have been the Chosen One, but I was the lucky one."

Gellar also thanked Whedon as well as her co-stars Alyson Hannigan, David Boreanaz and James Marsters in the post. Whedon and Hannigan also shared remembrances on Twitter:

20 years ago today, I had the greatest privilege to bring Buffy to your tv screens for the first time. It was a long and challenging road to get there. First the movie, then a passed over pilot presentation, and eventually a mid season time slot on a little known network. That first season, we liked to think of ourselves as the little show that could. While we knew the potential, I don’t think any of us saw the lasting impact our show would have. As an actor, you wish for that one role where you can leave your mark and forever be remembered, with Buffy I got so much more. She’s a feminist challenge to gender hierarchy. Buffy may have been the Chosen One, but I was the lucky one. Thank you to Gail Berman for always believing there was a show in that movie. Thank you to Joss Whedon, for trusting me to give life to one of the greatest female characters ever created. Thank you to David, for always being my Angel. Thank you to James for understanding that while Buffy and Spike may have been love/hate, I have nothing but love for you. Alyson, as any woman knows, you are nothing without the love and support of great female friends, so thank you for being that. Michelle, you will always hold a key to my heart. Thank you to all the incredible actors for seven seasons of amazing performances. I would be remiss if I didn't mention the incredible crew that worked tirelessly (and also really tired) to bring this show to life. And lastly, but most importantly thank you to all of you, the fans. We made this show for you, and your unwavering support has kept this show going long past our seven years. You are everything. And always remember..."if the apocalypse comes, beep me" #buffyslays20

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