Wow, this one is a genuine shocker. The CW’s long-running supernatural drama The Vampire Diaries is losing its leading lady. Nina Dobrev announced today on Instagram that the currently-airing sixth season will be her last. While there has been a lot of talk about cast shakeups recently, this one comes as a surprise. Elena is the central character and author of the titular Vampire Diaries – well at least one of those diaries. The show has always centered around Elena’s love-life, family and friends, so this is a major game changer for the series. Check out Dobrev’s announcement below.
Dearest TVD Family, I've just spent the most beautiful weekend on Lake Lanier in Georgia with my own TVD Family, the cast and crew of The Vampire Diaries. I want to be the first to tell you that it wasn't just a holiday celebration, it was a goodbye party. I always knew I wanted Elena's story to be a six season adventure, and within those six years I got the journey of a lifetime. I was a human, a vampire, a doppelganger, a crazy immortal, a doppelganger pretending to be human, a human pretending to be a doppelganger. I got kidnapped, killed, resurrected, tortured, cursed, body-snatched, was dead and undead, and there's still so much more to come before the season finale in May. Elena fell in love not once, but twice, with two epic soulmates, and I myself made some of the best friends I'll ever know and built an extended family I will love forever. There's more to come before we wrap this up, and I promise you'll get to hear all about my experiences over the next month as we approach the season finale (I have given an exclusive interview for the June issue of SELF Magazine that I am excited for you to see!), but until then I invite you to hop on the roller coaster ride that is Elena Gilbert's life and join me as I celebrate her and prepare to say goodbye to her — and to my work family — as I move on to the next chapter of my life. I want to share this goodbye with all of you (this weekend's pictures were just the beginning). You, the wonderful fandom who gave more love, support and passion than anyone could have ever imagined seven years ago, when a young Degrassi girl from Canada showed up in LA to audition for 'that Twilight TV show.' ;-) I love you all. Fasten your seatbelts. If you think you know what's coming, you don't. Love, Nina
Showrunner Julie Plec commented on Dobrev’s departure:
“Saying goodbye to Nina is both bittersweet and beautiful. After six-plus years together, the entire cast and crew of The Vampire Diaries has reached a level of closeness that I don’t think any of us ever expected. Nina is excited to spread her wings, get some rest, travel the world and also take it by storm, and we support her a thousand-fold. We will miss Nina and the four hundred characters she played, but we look forward to the insane and exciting challenge of continuing to tell stories of our Salvatore Brothers and our much-loved and gifted ensemble.”
I will always stand by the first two seasons of The Vampire Diaries, which were catchy, sexy and damn fine propulsive story telling. I binge-watched those episodes in a flurry, railing from storyline to storyline, totally invested in Elena and Co, and all their high-drama hijinks. It was supernatural soap opera at its finest.
I have to be perfectly honest though. I stopped watching The Vampire Diaries about two season ago, when I tired of the recycled story arcs, forced romances and constantly back-from-the dead characters. However, like so many shows I’ve broken up with over the years, I try to keep track of the stories and character arcs – I’m basically internet stalking my ex-TV shows.
I know the cure is still floating around, and that would certainly be an interesting end to Elena’s arc, but after so much hullabaloo about which Salvatore brother she’s meant to be with, I’d like to see one of the pairs end up together. Or all of them, just let them accept their cosmic destiny as a borderline-incestous polyamorous triad, and walk off into the sunset hand in hand. That’s probably a little too spicy for the CW, but it would be something!
In any case, the future is looking rather different for The Vampire Diaries. While Plec’s reply indicates future stories for the Salvatore Brothers, Perri recently spoke with Paul Wesley and he admitted that he was near the end of his run on the series. Dobrev’s on-screen brother,Steven R. McQueen (Jeremy), already departed, as well as Marguerite MacIntyre (Sheriff Forbes). Michael Trevino (Tyler) has booked ABC’s The Kingmakers pilot, meaning he will leave the show as well if the series is picked up. All an all, there are major changes afoot. Dobrev’s exit promises an entirely new take on the series, and something tells me Candice Accola, who regularly steals the show as impetuous vampire Caroline, is about to get some meaty material…unless she leaves too.