Vampires come of age in The Originals
Fans of The Vampire Diaries are excited about the arrival of The Originals but just how will the story of Klaus, Elijah and Rebekah differ away from the regular chaos and carnage of Mystic Falls?
Executive producer Julie Plec and The Originals star Joseph Morgan (Klaus) chat about how the sexy new show is taking some of our favourite vampires to a whole new level.
How do you want to differentiate The Originals from the The Vampire Diaries?
JULIE PLEC: Well, you know, the way we want to look at it, we just had an audience grow up with us for four years on The Vampire Diaries. That show that sort of, you know, set the stage is more of a coming of age story. It was cemented in the idea of first love and the struggles of being a vampire. And this is a show that is not about struggling to be a vampire. It's about embracing vampirism. It's about reveling in it. Some of these vampires are a thousand years old, and really, it's about the power of the family community and the power struggle over the family community and the supernatural community of an entire city. So I think it's ‑ we like to look at it as, you know, we graduated high school and went to college and are getting our little master's degree in The Originals.
JOSEPH MORGAN: Julie said it's like "The Lost Boys," you know, party all night and sleep all day. So, like, I like to take that vibe into it. But it's really, like you say, less about the guilt of being a vampire and more about kind of really reveling in that, and plus we're in New Orleans. So you put us in that decadent situation, you know, and we have a lot more sort of vampire parties and crazy kind of indulgence, you know, in our true nature.
JULIE PLEC: It's quite a lot more Bacchanalian, I think, in its tone in some of the ways we allow ourselves to have those indulgences as well.
The Vampire Diaries is a very big show, but there are people who don't watch it. Maybe they were not that interested in vampires in high school or for whatever reason. Is there any way that someone could come to this? It seems like a more adult setting. Are you thinking about an audience beyond the spin-off?
JULIE PLEC: Oh, God, absolutely. You know, it's one of the most difficult tasks that we've had to do creatively, but it's the most important task, which is how can we create a show, one, that stands on its own that doesn't rely on - that doesn't have to rely creatively on the foundation of the mother ship, so to speak, that can draw in an audience that has never seen a frame of The Vampire Diaries and capture that audience that could be a completely different group of people who sort of besmirched or eschewed "Vampire" when it first started because of Twilight and never, you know, decided never to tune in. You know, tuning into this as opposed to tuning into the pilot of The Vampire Diaries is like apples and oranges. It's very different, and we work hard every day to make sure that a new audience can just feel like it's a new show that they're joining along with everybody else for the first time.
Will the Silas storyline in season five of The Vampire Diaries create opportunities for The Originals cast members to go back to Mystic Falls?
JULIE PLEC: You know, I think that sort of goes globally under the crossover question, you know, what we would like to be able to do first is establish a show that works, you know, as its own show, and then, as the story dictates creatively, to be able to have a little bit of a crossover element if we can work it out, simply because there are relationships and history there that we left behind that we don't want to pretend like those relationships never existed. So as the show gets deeper into its own life, we have a lot of fan‑favorite relationships and other characters that, you know, may come to New Orleans or it's possible that Rebekah may drop in for a little, you know, quick visit.
Tell us about Daniel Gillies (Elijah):
JULIE PLEC: Very charming. And we'd all laugh and love him even more. Daniel, well, Elijah has been labeled, of course, the noble brother, the moral brother, the man of honor. And so his goal, as a man of honor and as the eldest remaining brother of this very, very deeply fractured family, is to try to bring them together and try to find redemption for this one (pointing to Joseph Morgan). And he's driven by that need and sees, in the baby, that redemption. And so he is driven from a place of emotion and the power of family. Klaus is driven from a place of power. So there's going to be a little conflict.
JOSEPH MORGAN: There is. I think it's common knowledge now as well that the first episode is going to be a retelling of the back door pilot, only from Elijah's point of view. So we're going to see all the little bits in between, the bits we missed, only it's going to continue a little further on in the story towards the end of it. So we really get to see what he's about from the beginning and what his motives are.
The Originals premieres on TVNZ Ondemand on Saturday 6th October.