The CW’s TV take-over begins in earnest with their eagerly anticipated Vampire Diaries spin-off The Originals – airing from 22 October 2013 on Syfy in the UK – which follows the original clan of bloodsuckers in their New Orleans bastion. With Rebekah Mikaelson now firmly back in the family and heading up the show, we find out from star Claire Holt what this means for her character’s romance with Matt (Zach Roerig) and where she stands on Klaus (Joseph Morgan)’s war with vampire king Marcel (Charles Michael Davis)…
What’s been the most rewarding aspect of playing Rebekah Mikaelson in The Vampire Diaries and now The Originals?
[The Vampire Diaries and The Originals executive producer] Julie Plec has written such a wonderful multi-dimensional character for me. At the start, the big challenge was to make Rebekah likeable. She’s a mean girl that nobody wants around, but you have to make her likeable and you have to make the fans want to watch her. It’s been really rewarding to watch her journey from a sassy, spunky killer to the girl who just wants to be loved. I’ve got to experience a lot of things as an actor on this show; everything from working on flashbacks and crazy stunts to being on a massive production like this. There are a lot of things that make the job really, really exciting. It’s great fun for me as an actress. It’s a truly great gig.
How much do you enjoy shooting the flashback scenes?
I love it. Well, apart from the times when you are asked to wear incredibly tight corsets in the middle of a humid, sweaty summer in Georgia. That is really tough. And the wigs… They are so hot! I love the look of the scenes afterwards, though. They are always beautiful when they come together. I think they really add to the story and they take you to a place that not a lot of other shows get to go. I love that aspect of the show.
What can you tell us about Rebekah’s upcoming storylines?
The next time we see Rebekah, she’s in Mystic Falls. She has a little unfinished business with Matt – but then you’ll see her come to terms with the fact that she really does love her family. Elijah said in the backdoor pilot, “I’m offering you what you’ve always wanted: a child.” That means she’s going to get off the high horse she’s been sitting on and she’s going to head to New Orleans to cause some trouble.
What’s going to happen to the romance between Rebekah and Matt?
I think that love affair is sadly coming to an end. I can’t imagine they are going to have a long-distance relationship. They had fun over the summer and it was a mutually beneficial, sweet relationship – but it’s coming to its natural end.
Who will catch Rebekah’s eye in New Orleans?
I’m not sure. However, it’s going to have to be someone she’s not related to, which doesn’t leave too many options right now.
What about Rebekah and Marcel? Do you see them two falling for each other?
Who knows? I imagine they could get together at some point. That would certainly be interesting. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens.
How will Rebekah feel about having a baby in the family?
I think she’s going to really love the child. I think she’s going to treat the child like it was her own. I’m sure she’s going to have a lot of fun playing dress up with a cute little wolf baby!
What’s the relationship going to be like between Rebekah and Hayley [played by Phoebe Tonkin]?
I think Rebekah is going to feel a little protective over Hayley, like a mother or a sister. I don’t think Hayley has any family, so that would be great.
When it comes to upcoming storylines in The Originals, what scenes are you looking forward to shooting in particular?
I’m looking forward to shooting anything with Phoebe. She’s been my friend for a really long time; we worked together on our very first TV show in Australia, so that’s what I’m looking forward to the most. That’s going to be a real treat.
Are you looking forward to anything else in particular?
I’m also looking forward to getting into the family dynamic in The Originals because I love the boys in the show. I have such great chemistry with Joseph [Morgan] and Daniel [Gillies], and we all work so well together. We have a great working relationship and I love to watch them because they are so talented. I learn a lot from them. You know what? I guess I’m really excited about everything. This show is going to be a real treat.
There’s a war raging between Klaus and Marcel. Will Rebekah stay on Klaus’s side?
Maybe? Maybe not? That’s an interesting point. Klaus has betrayed her a lot of times, so she may move over to the dark side. That would be fun.
Do you think there will be many crossovers between The Originals and The Vampire Diaries?
Absolutely. I hope there are crossovers. I think Julie [Plec] has definitely left the door open for that. There’s potential for the characters of The Vampire Diaries to come to our show and there’s also potential for us to go to their show. I’d love that. I think we should really capitalize on the fan base of The Vampire Diaries and use that to help us if we can because it’s such an amazing show. If we can have any sort of success like they have on The Vampire Diaries then we would be incredibly lucky. Here’s hoping.
How different is The Originals compared to The Vampire Diaries?
Tonally, The Originals is a lot darker and a little more mysterious than The Vampire Diaries. Setting the show in New Orleans adds a whole new element to the show, too. The mythology and history there is really interesting and captivating. The Originals is more of a family drama, so it’s less about romance. It’s going to be really interesting to watch.
The Originals are supposed to be invincible and immortal, but do you ever worry about getting killed off on the show?
I’m always worried that I’m going to be killed off. I just keep turning up to work and hoping I’m in the next script.
Were you upset that you didn’t get to shoot any scenes on location in New Orleans for the backdoor pilot?
I was bummed about that, but I did get to go there for a photo shoot. I got to have a little taste of New Orleans without the hard work, which was great.
How much did you enjoy your recent San Diego Comic-Con experience promoting the show?
Comic-Con was great. It was my first experience of the convention, so I didn’t really know what to expect. I lost my voice, so I spent a lot of time sipping on hot tea with honey – but it was awesome. It was so much fun.
What was the public reaction to the show?
It was very rewarding and exciting. You’re always worried that there may only be a few people at your show’s panel, but the room was full and everyone seemed really excited about the show. I couldn’t be happier with the response. We couldn’t be luckier.
The Originals is airing now on The CW, and begins 22 October 2013 on Syfy at 10pm.The Vampire Diaries Season 4 is available on DVD from 26 August 2013, pre-order it now for £17.51 from Amazon.co.uk.