Angepinnt The Vampire Diaries - NEW Julie Plec Interview

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    • The Vampire Diaries - NEW Julie Plec Interview

      In the most recent episodes of "The Vampire Diaries," Damon (Ian Somerhalder) seems to be indulging in a whole lot of wine, women, and blood. Mix that up with some pesky unwanted human emotion and Mystic Falls' favorite bad boy has himself quite the lethal cocktail.

      Zap2it caught up with executive producer Julie Plec to discuss Damon's apparent downward spiral. She reminded us of something Stefan said to Damon in the Season 2 premiere. "At the beginning of the season, Stefan said to Damon, 'Katherine ruined you once. Don't let it happen again,'" she says.

      Katherine's absence in Damon's life over the last 145 years left room for what Plec calls "the parts of Damon that are so self-destructive and so violent and so aggressive." Damon has lived in that dark place for so long that it's become his nature. Of course, there's something to be said for nurture - and Damon has changed.

      "He keeps himself in check because he wants to be, as Elena says, the better man," Plec says. "Not because of who Katherine was, but because of who Elena is."

      The struggle, now, is that Damon has to watch while Elena's (Nina Dobrev) affections are directed toward Stefan (Paul Wesley). "He doesn't have Elena, and he doesn't want to be a hero. When things happen that make him look in the mirror and not recognize himself, he's going to go back in search of that person that he's been for the last 145 years. Unfortunately, that means reverting to some old habits that kind of defined him for a very long time."

      When "The Vampire Diaries" writers' room first broke the story for the episode in which Rose dies, the hour had a very different ending. "We had written that entire script, and we had ended Damon's journey on that hug with Elena. We were done with the script and we were moving forward, and somebody said, have we taken Damon to too emotional of a place? He's sad, and he's upset, and he's struggling with dealing with his feelings," Plec says.

      The writers realized that Damon's response to the overwhelming emotion of losing Rose and having a breakthrough moment with Elena would send him over the edge. "The idea came up that maybe he should just completely regress as a knee-jerk response to having too many emotions," Plec says." That changed everything."

      And thus, Damon wandered drunkenly into the road, where he confessed his desire to be human again to a stranger -- and then killed her, just because he could. It's something Damon hasn't done in all season.

      "We just sort of added it in," Plec says. "Kevin [Williamson] wrote his speech at the end, which was just brilliance in action. It changed everything. It really reinvigorated all of us for that character because Damon is all about how deliciously bad he can be and how epically good he can be, and how the two are always at odds with each other."

      Somerhalder has his work cut out for him on Damon's journey this season. Somerhalder has told us several times that Damon's more vulnerable scenes take a toll on him. Things are only going to get more difficult for him.

      "It's no secret that having to play emotional Damon makes Ian really uncomfortable as a person, as an actor," Plec says. "It's hard, because you have to tap into your own emotional stuff, and now we keep challenging him. We're going to keep making him dig deeper and deeper."

      Right now, Elena is blissfully ignorant of Damon's new taste for human blood straight from the source, but when she sees Damon with Andie (Dawn Olivieri) she's not going to let her opinion go unspoken.

      "Damon's continued association with Andie will start to make Elena look at him and wonder. It's obvious that Damon is 'Carolining' Andie," Plec says. "So once Elena kind of figures that out and has time to have a heart to heart with Damon, it's certainly something that she's going to discuss with him. He's kind of exploiting this woman and our girl Elena is not going to be so down with that."

      Speaking of Elena -- she's been particularly proactive lately, refusing to sit back and let her circumstances determine her destiny. We're loving new badass Ponytail Elena, and Plec is, too.

      "Nina's so good!" she says. "The non-supernatural heroine in a show like this is hard to write. You want her to be strong-willed and you want her to be fierce, but also, by definition of being at the center of it all, she's often the damsel in distress. Trying to find the balance between putting her in jeopardy and also letting her be badass is something we deal with every week. With 'Rose,' I loved that shot where she kicks the chair and she grabs the chair leg and she holds it up, because it was so 'Buffy.' It's such a badass, 'Buffy' moment, and that really embodies Elena."

      Elena the Vampire Slayer is going to be put on hold in an upcoming episode when she and Stefan take a well-deserved romantic vacation that... doesn't go too well. "They do have a good five minutes, give or take. Elena smiles a couple times," Dobrev tells us. She wasn't kidding about those five minutes. Things take a turn for the worst when Elena is confronted with the harsh truth of Stefan's dark past.

      "Stefan and Elena are going through a little bit of a struggle after next week's episode with each other, because of the stories coming to light about who Stefan was," Plec says. "She's confronted with details about that period in his life, and it puts him in an uncomfortable place."

      Through an upcoming flashback episode, we'll see the gory reality. Stefan's demons are just as dark as Damon's -- he just doesn't let the demons control him as often. When we look back at a time when those demons did control him, we'll get a much more complete picture of Stefan's character.

      "The flashbacks have a big impact on Elena, as far as her willingness to trust Stefan and to trust herself when it comes to how to deal with this Klaus situation and her willingness to sacrifice herself, versus his insistence that she really needs to stand up and fight," Plec says.

      Source: Zap2it

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    • When do you decide you were going to kill off Jenna (Sara Canning)?
      Julie Plec: Those decisions are never made lightly. We talked quite a lot about it together in a span of a day when we were writing the story for episode 20. It was not something we set out to do in the beginning of the season -- it was a late in the day decision -- and once we made the decision about Jenna's demise that's the point when we orchestrated the vampire sacrifice of it all.

      Were you worried that fans would be very angry?
      Plec: We certainly did not want to piss anybody off or alienate anybody. With series regulars you're always going to have fan-bases that feel very protective of them and love them and feel like they're family so these decisions are not going to go over necessarily well all the time. But we spent an entire season building to this sacrifice ritual and bringing Klaus in and we felt like the loss of life in the sacrifice ritual needed to be as deeply personal as possible in order to show how big of a move it was that Klaus is making and how profound of an impact it would have on not only Elena's life, but on everybody.

      Does Jenna's death symbolize getting rid of the adults on the show to force the kids to grow up?
      Plec: That's a tough one because by no means do we think there shouldn't be parental figures on this show. Some of the parents are our most colorful and vivid characters. Elena (Nina Dobrev) began the series having just lost her parents and as an orphan and that is part of what defines her. Along the road she has found her birth mother, discovered the identity of her birth father and yes, had a surrogate guardian in Jenna, but when it's all said and done this is a girl who has experienced so much profound loss and that journey is continuing for her. It's all part of who she is and it's rough and it's brutal, but we want to take Elena to the next place. Now she's going to be in her own way a parent to Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen) and she's going to be the adult in the family and that's all going to be a part of the road that we're sending her down.

      Along with Jenna, Matt became aware of the supernatural, but now you've lost the innocent and high school teen perspective.
      Plec: The problem is there's always a fine line between keeping someone out of the loop and making them seem stupid. With both Jenna and Matt (Zach Roerig) we felt we were hitting the end of the rope there in our world of the characters having credibility, in fact, I think we stretched almost too thin. So bringing them in felt like the right decision. Now the hazard of that is we have no clueless innocence. Maybe we'll introduce new innocence or maybe the fun will be seeing Matt continue down his path with his life which is complicated without the supernatural elements and see where his place is and where he fits into this group of supernatural creatures that are also his friends and extended family.

      Now that Matt freaked out and broke up with Caroline, does that leave room for her and Tyler to get together?
      Plec: Matt and Tyler aren't in the last episode so their Season 2 journey has come to a close, but the fun of where I think we'll be able to go with it is that we've got a mayor and a sheriff who are each mothers of supernatural beings and who are not necessarily compatible with each other. Where are those mothers going to stand in all this and as mayor and the sheriff of the town, what conflict is going to arise as they jockey for position to protect their children and also maybe try to keep their children away from each other?

      The penultimate episode was epic, how can the finale compare?
      Plec: The last episode was clearly the season finale of our mythology storyline. We went all out and that was as deliberate choice knowing that the story we wanted to tell in our season finale is actually the emotional resolution of the season. We also want to really give the audience a window to where we're going in Season 3, a taste of what the series is going to be like as we move forward.

      Source: TV Guide