In an alternate universe, Greta Gerwig would’ve been the star of the How I Met Your Mother spin-off, How I Met Your Father. But thankfully for Gerwig’s career, that didn’t pan out. Instead, we got to see her become the most sought-out female filmmaker of the late 2010s. Though the How I Met Your Father series seemed dead and buried, Hulu decided to give it new life, with someone who might be a better fit.
Hulu has given the show a straight-to-series order, made by Love, Victor creators Isaac Aptaker and Elizabeth Berger. Hilary Duff, fresh off her role in Younger which is currently on its final season, will join How I Met Your Father as narrator.
A press release notes that Duff will star as Sophie, who tells the story of meeting the dad to her son. The show’s set in 2021, as Sophie and her friends “are in the midst of figuring out who they are, what they want out of life, and how to fall in love in the age of dating apps and limitless options.”
The How I Met Your Mother fandom is very attached to the original characters, but Duff is happy to take on the role of Ted Mosby’s counterpart. “I’ve been incredibly lucky in my career to play some wonderful characters and I’m looking forward to taking on the role of Sophie,” says Duff in a statement. “As a huge fan of How I Met Your Mother, I’m honored and even a little nervous that Carter and Craig would trust me with the sequel of their baby. Isaac and Elizabeth are brilliant, and I can’t wait to work alongside them and all of their genius. Just fangirling over here getting to join the Hulu Originals and 20th families. I realize these are big shoes to fill and I’m excited to slip my 6 ½’s in there!”
The news of the show actually being a real thing comes seven years after How I Met Your Mother creators Craig Thomas and Carter Bays teamed up with former SNL writer Emily Spivey to write a pilot for How I Met Your Father for CBS. As Deadline explained, two years after that, Aptaker and Berger wrote their own version of the show, but had to put the project on pause after they became This Is Us’ co-executive producers.
While we’re unfortunately not getting the Lizzie McGuire revival we’d been waiting for, seeing Duff play a character that sounds similar is good enough. As for how it stacks up against HIMYM, we’ll have to see if they also gather at an Irish pub on a regular basis and if there’s a Barney. With Duff playing Sophie, she could easily secretly be a teen pop star like Robin Sparkles, right?