Damon relives a horrible day in order to find his way home. Elsewhere, Alaric tries to help Jeremy cope with loss; Stefan teaches Elena about creating a new identity; and Tripp shares a dark secret with Matt.
More new Vampire Diaries stills! Two new ones from episode six!
“I decided to try to flip the kind of usual story of a vet coming home and loosing his mind, and instead, what if the country lost its mind when the soldier comes home,” writer and director Sean Mullin told Hamptons.com about his first feature film, “Amira & Sam.” We sat down with Mullin, as well as the film’s stars Dina Shihabi and Paul Wesley during the Hamptons International Film Festival.
Mullin, who was a captain in the army and a first responder after September 11th, drew inspiration from his own experiences for “Amira & Sam.” The romantic comedy takes a look at interracial romance in respect to the reality of life in an age of terrorism. Sam (Martin Starr) is an Iraqi war veteran who is struggling to assimilate back into everyday life in an indifferent New York City. An Iraqi refugee, Amira (Dina Shihabi), enters Sam’s world in a whirlwind and forever changes it.
“The Vampire Diaries” star Paul Wesley plays Charlie, Sam’s driven cousin who after realizing he can leverage Sam’s army ties, enlists Sam to work for his Wall Street firm. “I read it [the script] and I thought it was great,” noted Wesley. “I thought it was the opposite of the character I do on ‘The Vampire Diaries.’ I’ve never played a Wall Street guy.” Wesley, who had seen Mullin’s short film, “Sadiq,” was impressed with the director. While the actor was familiar with Martin Starr from projects like “Freaks and Geeks,” his first encounter with Shihabi was her reading for “Amira & Sam.” “I had seen Dina Shihabi’s audition secretly and I was blown away by it,” said Wesley.
Mullin was equally as excited with the footage. “With Dina I didn’t know of her work, but her audition was incredible. I didn’t finish watching the entire audition, I made it about halfway through and I just stopped it. I called my producers and said that’s Amira. She just popped to life for me.”
To prepare for her first major role, Shihabi researched what was happening to the families of translators in Iraq and she found it shocking. “It’s not spoken about enough what happens to them,” said the actress. “It’s not really spoken about in the film too much but I just wanted to know where I came from.” While she speaks Arabic fluently, she speaks a Palestinian Arabic or Lebanese Arabic, so she had to learn a completely different dialect of Arabic. She and Laith Nakli, who plays her uncle in the film, reached out to one of his friends from Iraq, who recently came to America, and had him recite the script, which they recorded and she listened to repeatedly to make sure she was speaking authentically.
“To me, the most valuable type of storytelling is challenging perceptions and there’s this tension that exists between perception and reality,” noted Mullin. The director used the film as an opportunity to defy stereotypes. “It’s easy to paint somebody just with a single brush stroke and assume they’re this type of person, but underneath everyone has their own story.”
Mullin took a laid back approach to the script, and was even receptive to suggestions from the actors, like when Wesley suggested his wife in the film be pregnant. “I’m very much the Woody Allen school of thought where it’s like if I can recognize my story on screen I’m happy,” Mullin told us. Wesley believed the addition would create a more relatable character. “I wanted him to have an agenda. I wanted him to have a soul. I wanted the audience to empathize with him, even though he was flawed.” Which is precisely why Wesley thought having a pregnant wife made him less villainous. “I said, ‘Why is Charlie doing all this? What if his wife’s pregnant? He has a baby. There’s more stakes. He needs to put food on the table.’ An excessive amount but you know money’s money.”
The cast was open to improv as well. “Obviously a lot of the dialogue stuck but there were moments where Sean was like, ‘Just have fun, play with it’ and I think a lot of those moments ended up on screen,” said Wesley. “Some of my favorite films of all times, I look at the behind the scenes or I look at the making of and all of them are like we just came up with that on the spot. All the great moments, ‘Midnight Cowboy,’ Dustin Hoffman walking across the street ‘Hey, I’m walking here’ you know, that was improv. All those moments are these sort of serendipitous like moments.”
“It makes you very present,” Shihabi added.
Added a new still from episode five of The Vampire Diaries, The World Has Turned And Left Me Here. And since I am team Steroline I like this pic!
Thanks to my friend Andrea at Nina Dobrev Network we have HQ captures of Paul as Stefan in Yellow Ledbetter episode of The Vampire Diaries.
Elena and Caroline meet at a swimming hole where Elena plans to introduce her to Liam, but things don’t go quite as planned. Meanwhile, Tyler asks Liv for a favor; Stefan returns to Mystic Falls and notices a strange change in Elena; Jeremy makes a discovery about the anti-magic spell that could put Elena in danger; and Damon and Bonnie stumble upon clues that lead them to believe they are not alone.
Paul spoke with Vulture and gave us his thoughts on his thoughts about Stefan’s reaction to loosing Damon, Stefan’s love life, and his new films.
For five seasons now, fans of The Vampire Diaries have battled it out over whether Elena Gilbert — she of the tousled coffee waves and impish grin — belongs with bad-boy Damon or good-guy Stefan. And now we may have the definite answer from Stefan’s alter ego himself, Paul Wesley. We caught up with Wesley — who is currently on the set of The Vampire Diaries in Atlanta, shooting season six — to discuss the season-six premiere, and he has some bad news for Stelena fans.
When we left Mystic Falls in the season-five finale, things had really imploded. Like, literally.
Yes, everyone had to scatter or die, basically. Stefan can’t go back to Mystic Falls, or he’ll die because of the stuff that happened last season — anybody with supernatural powers will immediately go back to their human form, and then they die how they actually would have died. So for Stefan, those bullet wounds from 1854 would just open and he’d die. Wouldn’t want that.
And the word is that Stefan is not traipsing across existential planes trying to locate Damon.
No. I’m a mechanic. I’m a car mechanic. I don’t know — I think Stefan is just trying to assimilate, and it’s a pretty arbitrary career choice. But he really needs a break.
Okay, this is making me nervous, because it feels like Dexter and the whole lumberjack thing.
Oh, I’ve never seen Dexter. Is it bad?
It’s a bit anticlimactic, actually.
Well, you know, he just needs a break. For five seasons, every time things with Damon end up imploding, it’s Stefan to the rescue. And that’s getting old. So this time, when Julie Plec and I talked about how Stefan spent his summer, she was like, “Looking for Damon, of course.” And I was like, “No!” I said, “Can we try a different approach? Can he bail, for once? Let Damon deal with it.” And Julie really liked that idea. It’s not forever, but it’s his reaction to things. It changes the game.
And so, with Damon stuck in the other realm and Stefan off fixing cars, Elena is without a Salvatore by her side. Whatever will she do?
Um, she’s losing her mind. She can’t handle it. At all.
Elena and the brothers Salvatore have been one of the juiciest love triangles on TV for six seasons. Does it ever get old for you guys?
Yeah. I mean, there are only so many ways you can do it after a certain point. I almost don’t feel like it’s a love triangle anymore. I know it’s advertised as that — and I know that’s how it started. But Elena and Stefan are so platonic at this point that I just don’t really see that ever happening again.
Paul, you’re breaking a lot of Stelena shippers’ hearts right now. Truly.
I mean, never say never. But I just can’t really see it happening, unfortunately. And I hate to say it for those Stelena fans. But it’s just become so platonic.
So what becomes of the lovelorn Stefan?
Well, him and Caroline seem to have a connection. I’d like to see that go down. I’m all for that. So they’re ready to explore that. We’ve just got to get them over that friendship hump, let them get down and dirty, and then deal with the consequences.
Hmmm … would that make things really awkward?
You mean between me and Candice Accola and her fiancé [Fray guitarist Joe King], who’s a good friend of mine?
Paul talks with Digital Spy on who Stefan should “bro out” with now that Damon is gone and some other fun stuff about the new season!
The Vampire Diaries star Paul Wesley has revealed that his character Stefan is “disillusioned” when the new season begins.
Season six begins tonight – Thursday, October 2 at 8/7c on The CW – with Stefan having “moved on” from the loss of his brother Damon (Ian Somerhalder).
“He’s detached himself from Mystic Falls – he’s moved out of town,” Wesley revealed. “Everyone thinks he’s looking for his brother and Bonnie but he actually has grown entirely disillusioned by that idea – he’s decided to give up and move on.”
Wesley joked that Stefan “needs a bro” in Damon’s absence: “You know who could be Stefan’s bro is Klaus (Joseph Morgan), but they never explored that.
“I thought they bro-ed out a little bit in the ’20s – that was a good bro out. I should go on The Originals!”
The actor also admitted that he is hoping for a romance to develop between Stefan and Caroline (Candice Accola) this season.
“I think that eventually they’ll be in the same vicinity… and hopefully make out,” he said. “I would like that – I don’t have any say in this, but I’m down with Stefan making out with any females!”