Maybe 2015 is the year of Annie Wersching. She stars in Amazon’s recently released series Bosch, and now she’s sinking her teeth (pun intended) into a pivotal role on The CW’s The Vampire Diaries. We caught up with Annie on Wednesday to talk about who she’s playing and why tonight’s episode is huge for her character.
SPOILER ALERT: This interview contains spoilers if you’re not caught up with season six of The Vampire Diaries.
Annie made her first appearance on The Vampire Diaries two weeks ago, in the episode “Let Her Go,” as the mysterious woman who was captured on video by Bonnie Bennett (Kat Graham). At the end of the episode, the show dropped a massive reveal on Damon Salvatore (Ian Somerhalder) as well as the audience: the mystery woman was none other than Damon and Stefan’s (Paul Wesley) mother, Lily Salvatore!
Needless to say, Damon isn’t just going to ignore the appearance of his mom, and in tonight’s episode he’s making a move to get her back. Damon and Elena (Nina Dobrev) plot to try and rescue Lily from the 1903 prison world, leading to the audience finally getting to make Lily’s acquaintance.
“It’s the first time that you’re really going to get to see her and sit and talk with her,” Annie explained, telling us that Damon will understandably want to know “what she’s been doing….They thought she had passed away.”
That “what” is certainly not sitting home and baking cupcakes. Last week, Kai revealed that Lily is herself a vampire, one who faked her death and went on a considerable killing spree before being imprisoned. There’s absolutely no chance audiences will confuse her with Annie’s role as earnest police officer Julia Brasher in Bosch or her best-known part of Renee Walker in 24.
But Annie doesn’t always play the good girl. You might forget that she was helping implant bombs in people during a two-part episode of Body of Proof, or that she’s now spent three episodes playing serial killer Dr. Kelly Nieman on Castle (including a two-parter just a month ago). How would she compare her current alter ego to the villains of her past? As it turns out, it’s not that simple.
Lily is someone who’s certainly “dangerous and intense…but on top of that a mother, a sort of refined 1800’s woman,” she said. “She has a fierce loyalty to those she considers family. It’s a really interesting dichotomy; that’s been pretty fun to play.”
So has being the person to help The Vampire Diaries‘ loyal fans start to unravel her mystery.
“Not much has ever been explained about her,” she continued. “The fans, they’ve been waiting for like six seasons to find anything out. They’ll learn a nice little chunk about her tomorrow. Of course, in this show, there’s always more.”
Playing the parent of one of a show’s main characters is way beyond your ordinary guest starring role. Especially when that parent has been much discussed but never before seen. The appearance of Lily is pretty much a game-changer. So what was Annie’s reaction when she was told about her character’s familial ties?
“I was incredibly excited,” she told us. “It’s a very, very cool role.”
Made that much cooler by the fact that she’s the one playing it.
The next episode of The Vampire Diaries, “A Bird in a Gilded Cage,” airs tonight at 8 PM ET/PT on The CW. For more with Annie, you can also follow her on Twitter (@Wersching) and read our interview with her about her role in Bosch.