Before Emma Stone Was Famous, She Was Almost a Partridge

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Mario Anzuoni/Reuters

Emma Stone poses at the premiere of the movie "The Help" at the Samuel Goldwyn Theatre in Beverly Hills, California August 9, 2011

It’s awfully inconvenient: the more famous an actor becomes, the greater the chance that embarrassing early footage will eventually emerge.

The latest example: actress Emma Stone, who is having a breakout 12 months in movies such as The Help, Crazy, Stupid, Love and Easy A (to say nothing of appearing in next year’s summer blockbuster The Amazing Spider-Man) who might be hoping you don’t check her out in the VH1 reality series, In Search of The Partridge Family.

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But isn’t that what NewsFeed is precisely here to do? Back in 2004 — which in Hollywood terms is, like, a lifetime ago — Stone totally rocked the auditions and won the role of Laurie Partridge. The excitement was clearly palpable: David Cassidy himself hosted the show and there was also the promise of the various winners (the format was that a set of eight people competed for each of the Partridge kids) starring in a new sitcom, The New Partridge Family.

Showbiz being the fickle mistress she so often is, the reality series was canceled after the pilot was filmed, and this episode never made it to air. What did we miss out on? Possibly one of the most painful key changes in recent memory, which kicks in at 1:05 into this clip. To be fair, the entire performance is worthy of one of Stone’s typical characters in the movies — who tends to be oh so cool, calm and collected — to raise an eyebrow and make an acerbic comment along the lines of, “really?” In which case, yes, really, because this truly is Superbad. (via Jezebel)

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Glen Levy is an Executive Producer at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @glenjl. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.