Even though Ian Somerhalder was at the TV Critics Association to talk about his role as Damon in The Vampire Diaries, with the final season of the cult favorite Lost set to premiere on February 3rd, I asked him about his role as Boone Carlyle on that show, one of the unfortunate passengers on Oceanic flight 815, which tears apart in midair, crashing on a mysterious tropical island.
Somerhalder has the distinction of being the first of the main characters to be killed on the series. Of course on Lost nobody is ‘lost,’ because of the science fiction aspect of time travel on the series every character can come back, and many do, for a guest appearance.
What will you remember most about your experience doing Lost?
Literally, from being on that set with some of those phenomenally talented actors, to watching rainstorms come, to looking at a 767 torn completely apart on this deserted beach in the middle of nowhere, to being a part of the most amazing, historic television shows ever made.
I would say regrettably maybe, I wish I was still on the show, but it all works out the way it does.
To be able to go back there and have that experience with all of those people who I have known for so long, and have J J (Abrams, who created the series) still wanting me around is really cool.
Have you finished working on it now?
I’m going to go back to do other episodes.
It’s a ten hour flight almost each way, so in a 48 hour period I was in the air for 20 hours, and on the ground for 28 and within that time I still got to have dinners with my buddies, Matt Fox and Josh Holloway, and their families, I went to four of my favorite restaurants, I went snorkeling and I shot what I needed to shoot for the show, all in about 27 hours.
This was in September.
So you are in the early part of the last season?
I think spread out throughout the season.
How does that work, are they accommodating you on this show?
You know what, luckily Kevin Williamson (the Executive Producer of The Vampire Diaries), Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse (Producers of Lost) and the line producers for Lost and The Vampire Diaries are making it happen. It is a feat.
I was so blown away and so impressed by the season opener for Lost, I was so thankful that I was even a part of that, because it’s big. The script weighed about four pounds. I thought, ‘Wow, this is an episode of television.’
What did you think about President Obama changing the date of his State of the Union address because of the outcry from Lost fans because the first episode of the final season would be preempted?
I never heard that. (he laughs) I don’t blame [the fans]. That’s really cool that I’ll be in an episode of television that President Obama thought better to change his State of the Union address. That’s so funny. You know what they should do? Maybe President Obama should watch the episode and then he can have the State of the Union address.
Getting back to The Vampire Diaries, do you like shooting the series in Atlanta or do you feel isolated?
I think we’re extremely isolated, but it’s a very heavy workload, and so by virtue of that we’re not out much anyway. Atlanta’s been good to us. We’re not exposed.
There’s no media there that we have access to. It helps with the chemistry between us; we spend every waking second together.
What does love mean to you?
Oh gosh, wow. That’s a loaded question. Here’s the funny thing I think about love, and this is going to sound so cliché, but it’s the only way I can justify it. We live by it, it fuels every single thing we do; it’s crazy. Looking at Damon, who is a maniacal sociopath at times, he’s fueled by love, which is a little creepy.
Look what’s going on in the world right now, the wars that are being fought, in some way shape or form, hatred is the antithesis of love which is a little alarming, because you do things out of love the same way you would do things out of hate or anger.
To me it’s something that fuels me, the love for my family, the love for my life, the love for the environment, the love for my work, and you ask yourself at times, ‘Why am I doing what I’m doing?’ And anytime you ask that question you generally say, ‘Because I love it.’
Who are you more like in real life, Damon or his good brother, Stefan?
If you cut them in half and made another person out of them, because I think I’m like both of them, I could be ‘Stamon,’ the other brother!