Vampire shows, much like vampires, can’t stay dead forever.
As “The Vampire Diaries” executive producer Julie Plec mourns the end of her long-running series, she also isn’t closing the door on the franchise. For one thing, the show’s spin-off, “The Originals,” is back for another season. And in this age of reboots, nothing ever really goes away.
Quips Plec: “In ten years when I’m unemployed and bored and someone calls and says, ‘Hey, Netflix is looking for a six-episode revival of “The Vampire Diaries,”‘ I will go, ‘fuck yeah, thanks Netflix!'”
But seriously, the executive producer says she has already planted some seeds that will provide “ways the franchise can live on even outside of these two shows, and one day soon I’ll be able to use that.”
“The Vampire Diaries” concludes its run on Friday after eight seasons and 170 episodes. Originally developed by Kevin Williamson and Plec, the series was based on the “Vampire Diaries” books by L.J. Smith, and starred Paul Wesley and Ian Somerhalder as two vampire brothers – one good, one evil – who battle for the soul of a small-town woman played by Nina Dobrev.
The show went on to develop a passionate fan base and eventually spawned the sequel series “The Originals.” Williamson eventually moved on to other things, and for the last several years Plec has served as the showrunner and series guide.
Plec said she remembered how well Williamson returned to “Dawson’s Creek” to wrap that show up, and wanted him by her side to do the same with “The Vampire Diaries.” Meanwhile, Dobrev – who left the show after the end of Season 6 – is also back, although that wasn’t easy. “It became a logistical nightmare because of her obligations to ‘XXX,'” Plec said. “They were being extremely firm… it was sweaty along the way.”
Plec talked to IndieWire’s “Turn It On” about what it’s like to end a long-running show, and how she wrapped the story up on her own terms. She also dug into her turbulent relationship with fans, most of whom are great – but a few who became abusive over the years.
Also in this episode: IndieWire senior editor Hanh Nguyen and TV critic Ben Travers discuss the return of one of television’s most lauded shows, FX’s “The Americans.”
IndieWire’s “TURN IT ON with Michael Schneider” is a weekly dive into what’s new and what’s now in TV – no matter what you’re watching or where you’re watching it. Each episode features interviews with producers, reviews, essays on the latest buzz and trends, plus a roundup of what’s premiering and what’s returning over the coming week. With an enormous amount of choices overwhelming even the most sophisticated viewer, “TURN IT ON” is a must-listen for TV fans looking to make sense of what to watch and where to watch it.