Ian has become somewhat of a bonafide vampire expert. After playing Damon Salvatore in TVD for eight years, he basically had the entire genre down pat. However, his new project V Wars is a fresh new take on the supernatural epidemic, tying into relevant topics such as climate change, racism, disease, and of course, politics.
WHO IS LUTHER SWANN?
"I feel SO lucky to have played the character Damon Salvatore for 8 years. I think he was literally one of the best-written roles in television ever. It was a blast. He was snarky, he was sexy, he was funny, he was dynamic. He was also at times, a huge prick. But people still loved him. But coming off that, when I found Luther Swann… while he might not be a vampire he still is a superhero to me.
"But his superpowers is that he is a great dad, a great scientist, and a great husband. He’s a good, normal f***ing dude. And then he is thrown into this situation that literally rips his world and everyone else world around him apart."
WHAT IS V WARS ALL ABOUT?
"It’s the set up of this really cool world! Controversial, sexy, dynamic, scary, relevant. This show is dealing with so much social relevance. That's where this disease came, from because of climate change, the ice is melting.
"It is a different take on vampires. It’s the first time where there is nothing supernatural. This is all medicine and science-based. So, they’re changing in front of you and you’re learning with them. They’re not sexy. They’re not old and wise and 165 years old."
"Adrian Holmes and my character go to the Arctic and get infected by this disease that has come from climate change. We had no idea when we go back and we go home and start spreading it everywhere. I am ripped apart from my family and my son and my best friend and my wife… and I’m forced to find a cure for this.
"So its a comedy! He laughs. "But that’s Luther in a nutshell. The Luther Swann that you meet in the first scene of episode one compared to the guy you see in the last scene of episode ten, is totally different."
DOES HE PREFER BEING THE VILLAIN OVER A SUPERHERO?
For Ian, this is a vast difference from his role as Damon, who was the villain for a very long time. But which does he prefer? The villain, or the hero.
"The villain is always so much more fun. Season two I remember calling Kevin and Julie Plec, almost in tears I was so pissed about where Damon was going. I figured this guy was going to stay this badass, snarky, funny, sexy lunatic.
"I hated where Damon was going..."
"...but, they very calmly and forcefully reminded me that this was the 100 episode arc of a man. There had to be levels of him falling on his face, being in love, being hurt and going through these things that we all go through.
"They had to drill it into my thick skull but at the end of the day, they were right. The vulnerability and levels of Damon Salvatore are what made him. It was a very valuable lesson. I was calling as a very concerned actor that was one of the leads of this show and saying ‘What are you guys doing??’ But they reminded me of the power of depth and dynamic of a character."
BTW, IAN AND PAUL ARE COMING TO AUSTRALIA VERY SOON FOR THEIR NEW JOINT PROJECT!
Ian and Paul Wesley's characters on The Vampire Diaries were incredibly different, but one thing was always certain, they loved each other. In real life, it's much the same. Ian and Paul are best friends who are now business partners, but Ian loves to remind Paul that the fans started to love Damon's character over Stefan's at one point.
"Stefan was such a beautifully played character who had really amazing depth and layers. This has been a ten-year journey with him, he’s family. He’s my little brother. We talk every day. We have a company together! Paul and I are launching a Bourbon brand together. The Salvatore brothers have their own freaking bourbon!
"Other than being in love with Elena, the next thing that these two brothers were famous for: drinking Bourbon! I mean Damon… 7 in the morning would walk in a scene out of the shower and pour himself a glass of bourbon."
Their bourbon launch means the Salvatore's are coming to Australia in 2020, with plans to throw a bunch of parties to celebrate. And yes, you'll have the chance to meet AND party with them!
"Paul and I will do a fan convention for the audience and then we will do the big cities and launch the shit out of this bourbon and we will have some fun parties working with fans and distributers doing fun parties!
"We will be behind the bar, slinging drinks and having a blast. Audiences will have a lot of fun with that. It just shows how fun it is to be on the ground, behind the bar serving people what we have grown to love so much."
DREAM: COMING TRUE!!
FINALLY... WILL DAMON SALVATORE EVER RETURN TO OUR SCREENS?
It's something that has been discussed far and wide on the internet. Will Ian reprise his role as Damon on The Vampire Diaries spin-off show Legacies? The actor has discussed the potential to go and direct an episode, but to settle the case once and for all, his answer is no... But he didn't seem too sure about it.
While answering "No," Ian fumbled with the idea of Julie actually offering it to him... but he might not be technically able to because of his role in V Wars.
"If I could go direct one I totally would but I can’t do anything else at this point. There’s not much I can do outside V Wars. I’m wildly committed to this show as a producer, director and actor so I am up to my ears in V Wars. I don’t feel the need to have 5 things going at once it’s just too much I want to focus on one thing and do it well."
If there was one thing that Ian couldn't help but urge his huge fanbase, it was to give V Wars a go, because without the fan dedication season two might not be a thing, and that would be a huge disappointment!
"If you were a fan of TVD I ask you to watch it. If you’re just a fan of the genre, I ask you to watch it. Give it a go because it’s worth it."
Whatever you say Ian!
V Wars hits Netflix on December 5!