The Mikaelson family is extremely complicated, and who better to untangle that drama than Julie Plec? The Originals showrunner will blog each week’s installment throughout the season exclusively for EW. From answering burning questions to giving behind-the-scenes stories and more, this is a place for fans to hear directly from Plec about the episode they just watched.
Keeping up the theme of rockstar writers’ assistants, tonight’s episode was written by Carina Mackenzie (and directed by The Vampire Diaries favorite Jeff Hunt). Carina used to be an ironically self-described “serious journalist.” Her coverage of the show was so good and her tweets were so clever that Kevin Williamson and I offered up ourselves as mentors of sorts. She asked me once what she had to do to get a writers’ assistant gig and I said “You have to quit your job. No one will engage with you as a potential writer for their show if you’re still a journalist. It’s a conflict of interest.”
She didn’t know this at the time, but this was a test. I knew if her dreams were bigger than her sense of intelligent reason, she would follow my advice. She would give up a paying job and take the leap of faith that would prove she was ready to enter the admittedly painful, difficult world of tenuous employment known as writing for television. Two weeks later she gave notice at her current job. The Originals got picked that week, and I offered her the job as writers’ assistant immediately. She passed the test, and a year later was bumped up to full-time writer where she remains today.
Tidbits from the episode:
- It was so hot filming out in the bayou, and Nathan Parsons basically had to be fully naked because of the way the director staged it. His character Jackson’s leg had been caught in a wolf trap, so he was covered in corn syrup (blood) and sweat. Basically a big flashing “Open for Dinner” sign for the mosquitoes. When all was said and done, the rule-makers decided he was a bit too naked and we had to add a tree branch in VFX. How we suffer for our art.
- Speaking of the rule-makers (otherwise known as broadcast standards and practices), you can’t show a side-boob or full naked thigh. Which makes shooting naked people extremely difficult and very susceptible to computer-generated objects added after the fact by corporate request.
- Production Designer Bill built Lucien’s Penthouse in art deco style, with a backdrop overlooking the French Quarter, like a king overlooking his land. Visitors love this set. It’s massive. Directors love to get their Boogie Nights on and do a lot of 360 Steadicam shots.
- Several writers I shall not name (one rhymes with Ba-bee-na Schnabenzie) are HUGE Veronica Mars fans and somehow manage to put Jason Dohring into all the episodes they write, because Logan.
- Baby Hope has been played by twins Blake and Charlie (both girls with excellent names) since Hope was born in the finale of season 1. One day when they start a billion dollar style and clothing franchise I hope they remember us fondly.