The CW’s Vampire Diaries and Originals sequel Legacies premieres in exactly one week — starting Thursday, October 25 on The CW following Supernatural. The show is a worthy successor to the parent series and centers around Hope Mikaelson, daughter of the previous series’ Klaus.
KSiteTV was among a group of outlets to visit the Legacies sets in Georgia, where the old Salvatore house is back with a new shine and a whole cast of new faces is about to learn how intense fandom really is. Between now and October 25, KSiteTV will be rolling out interviews with members of the show’s cast — and today, we’re starting with Kaylee Bryant who plays Josie Saltzman — yes, one of the twin daughters of Alaric. While we’ve seen Josie before at different ages, this is a new, more grown up performance — and Bryant spoke to us about the chance she had to mold this character even with those past appearances.
“I surprisingly got a lot of freedom with crafting Josie,” Bryant told us. “I watched The Vampire Diaries a lot growing up and I think that even with the four year old version, you got a little bit of a taste of who Josie was, and who she is now, she’s 15 years old so she’s changed a lot, but surprisingly, I walked on set for Episode 1 and I was expecting people to kind of mold me into what they were expecting Josie to be, but nobody said anything, so I had full range to do what I wanted and who I thought that she was. I thought that that was really exciting.”
As fans of the original Vampire Diaries series know, Josie has a twin sister, Lizzie (Jenny Boyd).
“Josie and Lizzie are so complicated,” Kaylee said. “They obviously love each other so much and Josie is willing to sacrifice anything for Lizzie, even if that is her happiness.” With that said, do not expect Josie to be a pushover. “Throughout season one, I think you’re going to see Josie develop a little bit of a backbone and learn to kind of stand up for herself and what she believes.”
Josie and Lizzie have different ways of vying for their father’s attention. “My way of getting my father’s attention is by not getting his attention,” Kaylee explained. “Lizzie’s way of going about it is to scream at the top of her lungs and crash everything in the kitchen. And I think that Josie has a little bit of that volatile power to her as well. That being said, if push comes to shove, Josie would do anything for her sister, and if that creates danger for Josie, I don’t think she minds that,” he continued.
Working with Matt Davis as Alaric has definitely awakened Kaylee’s inner fangirl who had been a fan of TVD. “It’s been so weird, because obviously watching the Vampire Diaries… we were doing a scene and he sat down on the bed, and I was thinking ‘holy crap. That’s Alaric Saltzman. He’s my father’,” she laughed. “It’s really cool. He’s such a cool guy, and it’s so easy to get along with him that we’ve kind of created our banter. It’s so easy to step into that Josie-Alaric relationship, just because that’s kind of how Matt and I are. He’s always looking out for me, and I’m always looking out for him in that way, and there’s a lot of respect there,” she continued.
Beyond her sister and her father, another major relationship that Josie has in Legacies is her friendship with M.G. (Quincy Fouse). “I love Josie and M.G.’s friendship. That’s my favorite thing ever,” Bryant admitted. “I feel like Vampire Diaries was about love, The Originals was about family, and Legacies, I think, is about friendship, and Josie and M.G.’s friendship, I think, is one of the most solid relationships throughout Legacies. It is unchanging. She can get mad at him for making out with her ex, but there comes a point where your bro comes first and I think that M.G. is definitely a very solid person in her life,” she explained. As we see in the pilot, Josie’s sexuality is fluid, which is something that means a lot to the actress playing the character.
“It means a lot to me, just because all of my friends, we’ve always been very fluid with who we are as people,” Kaylee explained. “Just reading the breakdown and reading these scripts, [I think that] it’s very realistic. I don’t know anybody in my friend group who is very set with who they are sexually, and I feel very honored to represent that with Josie, because Josie just feels love and she sees love. She doesn’t see gender. And I’m really excited for people to see that representation on screen,” she explained.
All of this knowledge of Vampire Diaries and Originals’ past probably makes it no surprise that Kaylee has a history of watching the shows. “My Mom and I started watching The Vampire Diaries when I was 14 on Netflix and we watched so much of it that we actually transferred over to watching it every week,” Bryant reflected. “And I loved it. I lived and breathed it. I feel a little bit creepy walking onto the set, and seeing the fireplace, and seeing these things, because I feel like I like that stalker fan that welcomed onto the set, and kind of snuck my way in,” she said.
“It’s just so crazy because I’ve been watching the twins being born on The Vampire Diaries, and then watching them be 4, and then I think there were 12 on The Originals… I feel like, no pun intended, there is a legacy that I need to kind of uphold, but I feel nothing but excitement. A little bit of nervousness of how people would react to it, but I’m really excited,” she continued.
And did she have a favorite “ship” on the original shows?
“Klaroline,” Bryant said, not even skipping a beat. “Danielle hates me for saying it. I love Klaus and Caroline so much. I’m also a Stelena shipper, which I know is very controversial, but I love Elena and Stefan so much,” she continued. And as for a character she’d like to see on Legacies, she swiftly pointed to Kai Parker (Chris Wood).
“I love Kai Parker so much. I’m fighting so hard for Kai Parker to come back. I know he’s busy on Supergirl – I’m super happy for him – but I would love Kai Parker. Just any of that Gemini Coven to be coming back into Josie’s world would be so cool to see happen,” she enthused.
You can see video of our on-set interview with Kaylee Bryant below, where she first talks about her first meeting with Jenny Boyd who plays Lizzie, what it was like to step into the Salvatore Great Hall set, and more. Legacies premieres October 25 on The CW. Come back to KSiteTV in the days leading to October 25 for more Legacies content as our countdown continues!