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EXCLUSIVE: Julie Plec on "Dark Place" Ahead for The Vampire Diaries

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Just how many werewolves are coming to Mystic Falls? Who will play Klaus? And, seriously, how many times can we expect to see Ian Somerhalder shirtless over the second half of season two?

These were just some of the questions we asked The Vampire Diaries producer Julie Plec in an exclusive interview, the first part of which we've excerpted below.

Vampire Diaries Cast Photo

Overall, what can we expect when the show returns?
We’re going to come to the end of what we’re calling our werewolf chapter, which will really take that story to a really dark place and really change a lot of characters lives, not necessarily in a good way.

We are going to dig deeper into the secrets of our new witches and what Bonnie's role is going to be in their story, and of course it's all about the fear of the impending Klaus, and who’s going to be fighting on who’s side, who’s bond is with who, who’s going to betray whom, and is this curse going to be lifted at the hands of a sacrifice that would kill Elena. We’re full steam ahead.

Do you ever fear the show will run out of storylines?
We never worry that we’re going to run out of steam because we know we have a lot of story to tell and that story can go on and on. What’s complicated is every episode is brand new. Rather than working on a CSI or even X-Files, where each week you have this formula to build off of, it’s like we’re starting a new movie from scratch each week. It’s trying to do that at a level of consistency of quality week after week, it’s just a really daunting task.

More than anything it’s not do we have enough story, it's how can we tell the best story possible every week in the time that we have. All of us are control freaks and perfectionists, so we kill ourselves trying to do it and I’m proud of it. Either the show will get cancelled in five years or we’ll die before one of the two things happen (laughs). We’re always going to try to make it as great as it can be.

How many more werewolves are coming to Mystic Falls?
That I can’t say, but I will say Tyler isn’t the only one, as we’ve just met Jules. Jules was talking to someone on the phone during the previous episode, and it's quite possible that that somebody might be showing up to town pretty soon.

Will we ever see Nina Dobrev take on more than two characters/episode?
That would be so cool and so hard to do. If we were ever going to do that to that poor thing, it would have to be the storyline of the century. Who knows!

Is there a clause in Ian Somerhalder's contract about appearing shirtless a certain number of times per month?
(Laughs.) No. It’s funny, we had a little bit of a drought of our shirtless boys this season, because we only put them shirtless when it feels right for the story. But I looked at Kevin and I was like, “everybody’s had too many clothes on for the last 6 or 7 episodes. This is wrong. So we’ll be seeing more bare-chested boys as we go into the New Year. All totally organic to the story, as always, of course (laughs).

Do you have any idea who will play Klaus?
None whatsoever. We started the casting process, we’re early in it. We have high standards, and high hopes. It's going to be very tough to not only hold their own against Ian and Paul, but also Daniel Gillies [Elijah], who a pretty tremendous actor. We’re taking the casting very seriously and it’ll be interesting to see how it turns out.

** We'll post part two of our interview with Plec near to the January 27 return of the show. Head over to our Vampire Diaries forum to discuss her answers now.

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i wrote a song called tonights the night .it would be great for this show its on youtube under tonights the night by hard hickey

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I can't wait for Jan|27 I mean I see it sooooooooo far away. Lol.
Anyways love the show, of course Ian's hotness and acting is amazing that's what I love the most. Also Delena! Oh my... how much chemistry those two have! They should totally happen!!!!

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Stelena is wayy better than Delena could ever be!

Tilly

Please don't kill Tyler or Caroline!

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I'm soo excited for Bonnie's sl. I love her to bits.

Sisa

OMG! Vampire Diaries is my absolute favourite show! Im lukin 4ward 2 da show's return.. I luv da Tyler n Caroline storyline, Bonnie shud choose Jeremy.. Delena may happen jst 2 spice things up bt i lyk Stelena! Cant wait 2 c who Klaus wil b :-)

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Damnnnnnn!!! End of the werewold chapter? :O Dont kill of Tyler! Dont EVER kill him off. I love him with Caroline. Its almost like Damon And elena! :D I love these pair!

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Love the interview so far, and so psyched for the show's return! I just wish there weren't so many grammatical errors with "who's"/"whose" at the start of the interview. It's really distracting... lol, sorry, I know it's nitpicky but it drives me crazy.

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atm Delena looks like it will never happen, Logically i cant see how Elena could ever forgive him for everything, no matter how many times he rescues her.

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Why will you post the 2nd part a month from now???? This is so far! You said you will post it "tomorrow", like the next day, why du you change your mind? :((