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TCA press tour: It's all about vampires

August 4, 2009 | 11:01 am

Vampires First, Edward Cullen took the world by storm.

Then came Bill Compton and his little Sookie.

Soon the world will be introduced to Stefan Salvatore, a 150-year-old vampire who is stuck in puberty. As if sleeping in a coffin all day were not challenging enough!

Stefan, played by Paul Wesley ("Fallen"), is one of the lead vampires in the CW's "The Vampire Diaries." His brother, Damon, played by Ian Somerhalder ("Lost"), is the other one, the one we are led to believe in the pilot is the more sinister one.

The vampire brothers both dig the same girl, Elena, played by Nina Dobrev ("DeGrassi: The Next Generation").

But this is not a high school show, says creator Kevin Williamson. It's the story of the small town of Mystic Falls, populated by pretty girls and pretty vampires. And we mean that kindly. The show is based on the series of books of the same title by L.J. Smith, but the series will use the first three books as a backdrop and then pursue its own stories, Williamson said.

"After we get beyond the premise of the girl and a vampire, we are trying to tell the story of a town," Williamson said.

Wesley said that playing an old character who pretends to be a teenager comes naturally to him.

"Everyone on the cast, we are the same ageish, but I'm like their grandfather," Wesley said. "It's challenging and fun, and it comes innately. I really enjoy this."

Executive producer Bob Levy said the actor was cast because he "is a young man with an old soul and that wisdom, maturity and worldliness."

How do you become a vampire on the show? The good, old-fashioned way, it seems.

"You have to feed on their blood," Williamson explained. "You have to die and come back, and then you have to feed on a human, and then you're a vampire. It's an ordeal."


— Maria Elena Fernandez

Photo: Paul Wesley, Nina Dobrev and Ian Somerhalder. Credit: The CW.


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