Pictured (L-R) Ian Somerhalder as Damon, Nina Dobrev as Elena and Paul Wesley as Stefan in "The Vampire Diaries."
At some point in the past few years, vampires went from scary to sexy.
“When we were younger, the vampires were scarier and creepier, and you didn’t want to get bitten by a vampire,” said Canadian Nina Dobrev, who plays Elena Gilbert in The Vampire Diaries.
“Whereas now, the media and the film business has made them sexy and they have blue eyes and brooding, mysterious appeal. They’re just sexy, so 12 to 18-year-old girls want to get bitten.”
’Twas not always so. Dobrev’s castmate Ian Somerhalder, who plays Damon Salvatore, thought back only a decade for an example of just the opposite.
“One of my favourite vampire movies is Shadow of the Vampire (2000), and I think if all the vampires right now looked like Willem Dafoe did in that movie, there would not be the same kind of (sexual fascination),” Somerhalder said. “It just wouldn’t work.”
Either way, The Vampire Diaries is wrapping up what has been a highly successful rookie campaign. The season finale, titled Founder’s Day, airs Thursday on CW and CTV.
“We’re thrilled that people want their vampire fix, and we happen to be their weekly vampire fix,” said Dobrev, a graduate of Degrassi: The Next Generation. “We don’t know why (the vampire craze) is so popular, but thank God it is, because we’re all employed.”
Elena serves as the moral centre of The Vampire Diaries, and while Dobrev handles the role with aplomb, it might get a tad boring if that were all she got to do.
Luckily, she also gets to play Elena look-alike Katherine, the evil and powerful vamp who “turned” Damon and his brother Stefan (played by Paul Wesley) 150 years ago.
“In this one show, I get to be the good, nice girl, the girl next door, the sweet one, but at the same time I get to play Katherine, who is this crazy, narcissistic, conniving, selfish vampire who kills people and doesn’t really care about it after,” Dobrev said.
“Personally as an actress, from all my other movies or shows that I’ve been on, I generally have played the good girl. I haven’t really gotten to — no pun intended — sink my teeth into something like this. So it has been fun to literally sink my teeth into this and be crazy and mean.
“(Damon) learned from Katherine, so I basically copied Damon, how Ian plays Damon.”
Thus far we have seen Katherine only in flashbacks, but it has been confirmed she’s still out there in the present-day setting of the series.
So might Katherine show up in the season finale for a little face time with Elena?
“I think it would be amazing to have Elena all of a sudden meet present-day Katherine,” Wesley said. “I think inevitably, I’m only hypothesizing, as I announce that I think it will inevitably occur ... ”
Added Somerhalder, “I think Damon and Katherine should go on a double date with Stefan and Elena. They should go on a double date and just see what happens.”
Dobrev rolled her eyes playfully.
“See, I have the worst job here — I have to be with both of them,” said Dobrev, pointing simultaneously to Wesley and Somerhalder.
You know, Nina, we bet there are a lot of women — of all ages, actually — who would volunteer to walk a mile in your shoes.
After all, vampires aren’t scary any more. They’re damn sexy beasts.
'The Vampire Diaries' May 13 finale spoiler revealed by Katerina Graham
Wednesday, May 12 2010 03:06:19 PM
The finale of The Vampire Diaries' debut season is set to air on Thursday, May 13, and actress Katerina Graham, who plays Bonnie Bennett, recently shared with OnTheRedCarpet.com a major spoiler about what happens in the last episode.
"Two people die," Graham said at a recent party at Drai's nightclub in Hollywood to celebrate the launch of Victoria's Secret's "What is Sexy?" list.
The Vampire Diaries, which stars Nina Dobrev as Elena and Paul Wesley and Ian Somerhalder as vampires Stefan and Damon, has been renewed for a second season. Graham plays a psychic and Dobrev's best friend.
Kayla Ewell, who played Vicki Donovan on the show, had said in March that a character would die on the season finale, which is titled "Founder's Day" and airs at 8 p.m. ET on the CW network.
Talk about teen angst! It’s hard enough to be dating a fangster like The Vampire Diaries’ Elena Gilbert does. But to stand by her undead man after catching him chowing down on another girl, now that marks a woman who doesn’t give up until she gets what she wants.
Minus the blood and biting, Nina Dobrev, who plays Elena, shares that same drive. It’s how she got the role. “Nina was one of the first girls to come in,” recalls executive producer Julie Plec. “She was sick, and we didn’t really look at her twice. So she went home to Toronto, put herself on tape and sent it in. It was so perfect our jaws fell on the floor.” Says Dobrev, “I loved the role so much that I had to keep fighting for it until I won it.”
The 21-year-old Bulgarian-born, Canadian-raised actress is no newcomer at reaching for the gold ring. As a former gymnast, she competed around the world. When she switched to acting at age 16, she landed the first three roles she auditioned for, including teen mom Mia Jones on the popular teen drama Degrassi: The Next Generation. After three seasons on the show, she hit the Hollywood pilot circuit and soon won the role of Elena on The Vampire Diaries.
Dobrev felt an immediate connection to the character. “She’s not a one-dimensional high-school girl who’s just about boys, popularity and clothes,” she says. “Elena’s strong and courageous and looks out for her loved ones.”
It’s not much of a stretch for the actress. “Nina is the happiest one on the set,” says Plec. “She’s the one who will throw her arms around you, take a picture, put it in a frame and send it to you as a gift. She’s that sweet, nice girl who encourages people to hang out and have fun.”
Indeed, the cast celebrated the season’s wrap by watching the show together, then heading out for dinner. “We are such a family,” says Dobrev. “Paul [Wesley], Ian [Somerhalder] and me are going on a promotional tour to Australia, Monte Carlo and London. I always feel so protected and taken care of by them. We’re like a three-way married couple!” She’s also hoping to chill out on a beach vacation with some of the girls on the show, including BFF Katerina Graham (Bonnie) and roomie Sara Canning (Aunt Jenna).
The day after shooting the season finale, Dobrev carefully hints that blood will stain the long-awaited Mystic Falls Founder’s Day Celebration. “The finale will exceed all expectations,” she says. “There’ll be a lot of vampires in town. There will be a battle. There will be fatalities.” Caught in the middle are Elena, her boyfriend Stefan (Wesley) and his brother, her new dangerous ally Damon (Somerhalder.) “The finale might make a lot of people angry,” Dobrev predicts. “You’ll be shocked and exhilarated.”
And things won’t get any easier next season. “The events that happen in the finale are going to affect Elena in many ways,” reveals Dobrev. “She’s starting to understand the reason for everything Damon does, and that troubles Stefan. Her relationship with Stefan is going to get a lot more complicated.”
The star-crossed lovers’ torments are just fine with Dobrev, who admits to being “a sucker” for weepy romantic sagas. “I do have hope that true love exists somewhere out there,” says the single actress. But right now, she’s focused on her career. “I want to get into producing and writing, and I want to get into films,” she says. Plec has no doubt Dobrev will succeed. “Nina’s very, very smart about what she wants from her career. We’re all going to work for her one day.”
Thursday, May 13th, 2010...10:07 am EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Mia Kirshner (Isobel) from The Vampire Diaries
Last week’s episode of “The Vampire Diaries” was one of my favorites of the entire season. We have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of Elena’s biological mom and we finally got to meet her. We even find out that Jon Gilbert is actually Elena’s biological father. Isobel is a complex vampire who struggles with her humanity (or lack thereof) and her feelings towards her ex-husband Alaric and her “maker” Damon. I recently had the chance to chat with Mia Kirshner, who plays Isobel, and she had some interesting insights into her character. We even talked a little bit about her time on “The L Word.”
How did you get the part of Isobel? It was all just pretty random. It was right before Christmas, and I was in the countryside of Malawi staying on a dairy farm, (laughs) and I got this call from my agent and they told me about the show, The Vampire Diaries and it sounded pretty cool. And then they said that I could speak to Kevin Williamson and Julie Plec [Executive Producers] who I spoke to and it was through Skype and it was a really crackly connection, but there were words: mysterious and unpredictable and stuff like that I believe we used in the conversation that made me excited about the character. And I knew that they were talented, so I said yes–not knowing a lot about it. It was kind of a leap of faith.
Isobel is a vampire devoid of any human emotions. How are you able to relate to her? I don’t think that’s true.
Oh, you don’t? Interesting! I don’t. I think that she tries not to have human emotions but I think actually that’s her weakness–that she struggles with is that she does still have feelings for Alaric and her daughter.
Oooh, interesting. And how are you able to relate to her? Are you anything like her at all? (laughs) We both like Paris. We love France. We speak French. That’s probably about it.
So the producers didn’t tell you too much about her back story? No. I only learned more about the back story when I watched the actual episode. And that was interesting. But no, it was sort of left to my imagination what happened to her between the time that Damon turned her and when she comes back.
So you think that she loves and cares for Alaric. Why do you believe that? Because I think true love is hard to come by and I think it’s part of who she is. She’s got a lot of lovers in her life, and nothing to compares to what she had. And it’s like at the end of the episode “Isobel,” she said “I made a mistake.”
Do you think she cares about Elena as well? I think so. And I also think, as twisted as this sounds — I’m not defending Isobel’s actions — I think she wants to push her daughter away because she doesn’t want her daughter to be like her. But I think that ultimately, she’s going to do everything she can to protect her daughter’s well-being.
Yeah, like try to kill Damon and Stefan. Yes, I mean in her mind, I think she has a skewed view of reality (laughs).
I think the question everyone wants to know is will Isobel be back? You know, you never know what’s going to happen. I think that’s a question for Julie and Kevin. I would imagine she’s been really positioned in such a way that I think, I don’t know, it seems like she certainly the character to be reckoned with. But that’s more of a question for them.
Presuming she does come back, which I hope she does, what do you want to see from Isobel going forward? I think I’d like her to go head-to-head with Katherine one day. I think that would be fantastic. I would like to see the full scope of her power. I think ultimately she wants to be in charge. So, how she’s going to do that I’m not sure. But yeah, I think I’d to see more of that. And I’d like to see more elements of her past and then the present day. Like where she was and what her influences are and why she is the way she is. And I’d like to see — for me, what was really important, which you don’t see that much in this episode — but something that I want in the character is the humanity. I think that’s what makes her even more seductive.
For sure. And what was your favorite scene to film in last week’s episode? I really love working with Matt Davis. He is just such a goofball and when I work with him, we’re both like little kids together. We make dumb jokes together. And sometimes it was so hard to look at him, because I’d burst into laughter. I just think we have fabulous chemistry. Ian [Somerhalder] is just lovely. We sat next to each other on the plane. And then we actually met to rehearse our scene and I respect his preparation and his seriousness towards his work. He’s a gentleman. He carried my bag at the airport, he drove me back to the hotel. He’s a really, really, really nice guy. I don’t want to pick a favorite because they’re all great. And Nina [Dobrev] came back to my hotel room and we had dinner and rehearsed together, and [she's] also very professional. So I guess in different ways, I enjoyed all of them, which sounds like a boring answer.
You touched on it a bit, but what was it like coming into such a tight knit cast? Were they very welcoming? Yeah, they were totally lovely. I really appreciated the fact that it’s the end of the season, and I imagine everyone’s so tired, and yet everybody rehearsed. So that was wonderful. And I thought that they were unbelievably welcoming and sweet and gracious. I think what’s most impressive about the cast is something that perhaps people take for granted is that they’re professionals. They know their lines, they do their job, and they take their work very seriously. As a result of that, it’s a welcoming atmosphere.
Do you think Isobel is anything like any of your previous characters? Jenny Schecter [from the L Word] comes to mind. Like Jenny? Oh no, I don’t think Isobel is crazy.
She’s just a vampire. Yeah, she’s just operating on another — we’re not talking human terms, when we talk about Isobel. No I don’t think she’s like Jenny. And it’s also a really different kind of show. But no, I don’t think so. Isobel was so cold and flat, and there was so little room. It was a challenge for me as an actor, because I’m not used to working like that. So I guess in that sense, it’s a very different character.
That makes sense. To switch gears for a moment to The L Word, the big question in my mind, with the way everything ended, is did someone kill Jenny or did Jenny kill herself? I don’t know. The whole last season was confusing to me. So, I wish that I had — I don’t know. I wish I had an answer.
That’s okay. That’s a perfectly acceptable answer. I always thought Jenny was a survival of the fittest type person. I don’t think she would — I could imagine Jenny faking her own death and reappearing in another country to wreak havoc.
Do you have favorite moments from filming that show? Oh my God, I mean, that’s the thing. Rose Rollins, who played Tasha, is one of my best friends. Actually, her show was just picked up today! So we talk about this all the time. It’s not really a favorite moment, but we were so lucky to work with the girls that we worked with. We were so close and we had so much freedom and it was just a very blessed time, in my life at least. I’m very grateful for that.
So back to The Vampire Diaries…did you have any interesting fan reactions to Isobel? You know what, I don’t think I look like Isobel in real life, so I haven’t been recognized as Isobel. But I guess, we’ll see.
Do you know any tidbits of your storyline that we didn’t get to see or we might see in the future? Yeah, there are definitely — and again, I think it’s a question for Julie and Kevin — but there were quite a few things that were left out, that weren’t in the episode, like quite a few juicy things that I’m not sure why they chose to remove. But I don’t know if I’m allowed to say what.
Any little things that you could share? I guess the scene with Alaric at the end was much more romantic, and much sadder. And then I think the scene was Damon was definitely much longer. That was cut down.
And do you have any other projects coming up? Well, I just finished The Vampire Diaries, and I finished another movie where I play a vampire queen. And that’s called “Dark Days.” And what I spend most of my time doing — I had a book that Pantheon Books published last year, called “I Live Here,” and it’s an anthology about human rights all over the world…human rights abuses. [It's] kind of like a visual documentary. My partners and I started a program in Malawi’s Kachere Juvenile Prison. The link for the website I-Live-Here.com.
That’s what you were doing in Malawi! Exactly! You were probably wondering why I was there. I was there working on — we run a school in a juvenile prison, and we run a permaculture program, a legal rights program and creative writing [program]. We’re having a ball — a Russian themed ball on July 29th. It should be fun. It’s such a huge part of my life, that in a way, it kind of inhibits my ability to work as much as I’d like.
Well I know I hope to see you again on The Vampire Diaries next season. It was such a wonderful episode. Oh really! You liked it?
Oh yeah! I couldn’t tell. Was it a good episode?
Yeah. They’ve been building Isobel up all season, so it was great to finally see her. I really liked it. Thanks, I really appreciate it.
Be sure to tune in tonight for the season finale of The Vampire Diaries at 9 pm on the CW.