One goodbye is not enough for Dylan O’Brien.
Although he and his character have already moved on from Beacon Hills, it was recently revealed that O’Brien, who has played the role of Stiles Stilinski since Teen Wolf‘s premiere in 2011, would return to the series for the final episodes.
“Oh man, that was great. I’m really glad I got to be a part of it at all towards the end,” O’Brien, 26, told PEOPLE at a special screening of his new film American Assassin hosted by The Cinema Society and Saved Wines on Wednesday night in New York City.
“That wasn’t originally meant to happen,” he divulged, referencing the fact that his character had already exited in the first half of season 6 and he was not contractually obligated to return for the final 10 episodes. O’Brien clearly didn’t care if it was in his contract or not. “I wouldn’t have had it any other way. I would have been really upset to have missed the ending. I was really glad I was just able to come and be a part of it,” he said emotionally.
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In fact, that wasn’t even enough for him — he wants more of the MTV series (and so do the fans!). “I wish I could have been a part of more of it,” he revealed. “But I’m just happy I was able to be a part of it in the end. I was happy I was able to finish with everybody.”
O’Brien recognizes that this show was a turning point in his career. “It’s a huge end of a chapter. It’s really emotional.” And like the fans, he’s still adjusting to the fact that it’s actually ending after seven years. “It slowly hits me as time goes on. Even though I’ve been aware of this and anticipating this, knowing that it obviously means a lot to me. For a while I’ve been anticipating it. But still it slowly dawns on me the more I think about it.”
Now that his chapter is over, he’s reminded of his start as Stiles. “I still remember when I was 18 and my life was completely different,” he began. “I was in my apartment and I got the call that I got Stiles for this pilot. I was just jumping around with my roommates, freaking out. It’s crazy to think about. That was eight years ago. I couldn’t be happier with the whole experience.”