The Vampire Diaries TV Show on the CW
The Vampire Diaries is a series of books by author L J Smith. There's now also going to be a Vampire Diaries tv series and it is scheduled to air this fall on the CW network. It premieres on Thursday, September 10th.
The Vampire Diaries stars two of my favorite pretty young actors, Ian Somerhalder and Paul Wesley. They'll be playing vampire brothers both obsessed with the same human girl.
The Vampire Diaries books predate the Twilight series by a good number of years. It started life as a trilogy published in 1991 -- The Awakening, The Struggle and The Fury. Now, however, there are a total of seven books. I won't get into the plot too much in case you haven't read them and don't want to be spoiled for either the tv show or the book series (although it remains to be seen if the television show will stick to the story told in the books).
By the way, if you don't want to be spoiled, avoid reading the Wikipedia entry about the Vampire Diaries at all costs or you will hate yourself.
Buy the books
Books 1 & 2 in the original series
Books 3 & 4 in the series
Vampire Diaries on the CW
The tv series will be executive produced by Kevin Williamson, the creator of both Dawson's Creek and the Scream series. The original pilot was written by Williamson and Julie Plec (who was involved with Kyle XY) and it is directed by Marcos Siega, who has directed episodes of Dexter and True Blood, so I'm expecting something pretty decent from the creative team.
There are a good number of changes made between the books and the tv series. Many of them are largely superficial, such as changing Elena from a blonde to a brunette.
But there have also been some significant
characters removed or replaced as well - such as changing Elena's sister into a brother and removing one major character from the book entirely, Elena's best friend, Meredith. Of course, if the show has a decent run, there's no reason Meredith couldn't turn up later. There are some other changes as well, but these are the most noteworthy.
You gotta love the CW for all the pretty people that populate its shows. The Vampire Diaries will be no exception. Let's take a look at our lead players.
Vampire Diaries tv show cast
Elena Gilbert is a blonde in the books by LJ Smith, so the casting decision here has already caused a bit of a stir among fans of the book series since Elena will be played by the decidedly unblonde Nina Dobrev, formerly of Degrassi: The Next Generation (a Canadian YA tv series that would be right at home on the CW).
The 17 year old Elena and her 15 yr old brother Jeremy (played by Steven R. McQueen) have been orphaned by a fatal car crash that killed both their parents. Actually, let's stop right there. I previously mentioned the other casting incident that has annoyed some fans. In the books Elena doesn't have a brother. She has a younger sister. So now we have a troubled brother instead. Expect many shenanigans related to drugs.
The siblings move in with their Aunt Jenna (a name change here from the books where he is named Judith) and start attending Mystic Falls High School. Yes, they really named the town "Mystic Falls". No, that is not the name from the books. It's original name is Fell's Church. The town is located in VA, but I believe filming is actually taking place in Georgia. I think in all likelihood the town name was changed in order to distance the location from the real Falls Church, Virginia.
Stefan Salvatore, the good vampire brother, is played by Paul Wesley. Like many good vampires, Stefan is one of those bores who doesn't drink human blood. What a goody two-shoes! But I guess every vampire series needs at least one tortured, guilt-ridden vampire and Stefan is the go to guy here.
The actor Paul Wesley is a tv regular. His last big role was in the mini-series Fallen about fallen Angels, which I recommend. He also starred in the short-lived series, Wolf Lake, which ran for nine episodes. Hopefully, the Vampire Diaries will last a little longer than that. If it's any good, I'm hoping we get five seasons out of it *g*
Originally, it looked like the tv series producers had decided to change the last names of Stefan and Damon from Salvatore to Whitmore. Presumably, because they had changed their background. In the books the vampires were from Italy and were human during the Rennaissance era. In the tv series, they now have a Civil War background and are American. But it appears that the CW has at least thought better of the name change and Salvatore is their last name once again. It's listed that way on the CW website anyway.
Damon Salvatore is my kinda vampire. No qualms about drinking human blood and he's arrogant and seductive and devilishly handsome. Naturally the two brothers come head to head over Elena. It's a case of history repeating itself, since both had the same fight just a century ago over a different woman, Katherine. But will Elena choose one or both? I think it all depends on how steamy the CW allows it to get.
The casting choice here is one of the few that has won a great deal of support from fans of the novels. It's not surprising. If there's any actor that was born to play a dangerously sexy vampire, it's Ian Somerhalder :)
Somerhalder is probably best known for playing Boone on Lost, but he also starred in the recent Scifi movie, Lost City Raiders. He's also been in a bunch of movies.
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