‘Interview With the Vampire’ Cast Breakdown Season 2 Premiere

14 Min Read

SPOILER ALERT: This post contains spoilers from “What Can the Damned Really Say to the Damned,” the season 2 premiere of “Anne Rice’s Interview With the Vampire,” streaming now on AMC+.

On the set of AMC’s “Interview With the Vampire,” showrunner Rolin Jones and star Jacob Anderson had a nickname for Anderson’s character, Louis de Pointe du Lac. “We called him Cuddles the Vampire,” says Jones Variety with a smile.

But notice the past tense. “We wanted to break that,” Jones adds, and with the show’s Season 2 premiere, they put an end to that for good.

The Anne Rice adaptation and anchor of AMC’s burgeoning Immortal Universe returns with Louis and fellow vampire Claudia (Delainey Hayles, replacing season 1’s Bailey Bass) as they travel through post-World War II Europe in search of ancient vampires. They are not on good terms. Claudia is still furious with Louis for not getting the job done by killing Lestat (Sam Reid), their creator and his lover, in the season 1 finale before fleeing New Orleans. So they wander around, looking for a new place in the world among their own kind.

They are welcomed as guests at a refugee camp in occupied Romania and stay there just long enough to gather information about local vampire lore. They see doorways wrapped in garlic and bullet-ridden bodies meant to prevent the resurrection of the undead. For Louis, with a nice buzz from a little vodka, the camp gives him the first relaxing evening in five years. But Claudia, ever the hunter, stalks the night in search of other vampires and finds an emaciated, corpse-like figure feeding on soldiers in the forest. He is clearly not getting any nourishment from the meal, which Louis and Claudia believe is because the desperation of war is corroding the blood.

Jacob Anderson as Louis De Point Du Lac and Delainey Hayles as Claudia.
Thanks to Larry Horricks/AMC

The next evening they wake up to the hysteria of a crowd in the camp. Their kind host has been bitten and the crowd fears she will turn into a vampire, despite her partner’s pleas for mercy and help from Louis. But Louis just watches, unusually devoid of compassion for the woman, whose head is cut off as he turns his back and leaves with Claudia.

“In episode 3 of season 1, [Louis] says he’s a vampire – but not really,” says Jones. “Not until this moment. It was really cold. It was in the book and it’s really effective and amazing. And there was a conversation with the AMC about why that was important, and we continued with that.”

See also  Harvey Weinstein's New York rape conviction overturned, given unfair trial

Jones says the network was wary of leaving cuddly Louis behind, but Anderson was willing to lose that part of the character.

“He definitely leaves behind another part of his humanity in that moment,” Anderson says. “That’s probably because for him it is now a facsimile of humanity. Like the photos he takes [in upcoming episodes]. He becomes a parody of himself, and he won’t embrace it. I think Louis has been at war with himself all season.”

Louis and Claudia’s walk to find other vampires is a crucial part of Rice’s 1976 novel, but was left out of the 1994 film adaptation starring Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise. In the fifteen episodes of seasons 1 and 2, the series takes time to cover Rice’s entire book – and much more.

“We always thought this would be a nice little gift for fans, and it’s exactly where it should be,” says Jones. “But we also knew that it would have to function as a pilot for the rest of season 2. So we really focused on the relationship between Louis and Claudia, and improving manners and how we predict an inevitable ending, but do it with a moment of grace.”

The moment he’s referring to is the climactic moment between the unorthodox siblings, when Louis strengthens his devotion to Claudia as they leave Romania behind and head for a new start in Paris. He is determined that they are together against the world. “If you were the last vampire on Earth, that would be enough,” he tells her. But just off-screen for Louis, the ghostly presence of Lestat lingers, haunting him like an embodiment of his guilty conscience since they parted ways. Who is Louis actually talking to at that moment? He glances at Lestat, but Anderson seems to believe that Louis is locked into Claudia when it comes down to it.

“I feel like part of the point is that we don’t really know,” he says. “But if you were to watch episode 1 again after watching it [the end of the season], that would be one way to answer that question. At that moment he is definitely talking to Claudia.

Hayles says she believes Claudia is taking his statement to heart, in part because they witnessed a horrific reminder that their immortality still has limits. Before leaving for Paris, they meet an elderly vampire named Daciana, the mother of the primordial creature that Claudia had previously seen feeding and later going blind in battle. Daciana kills her now disabled child because he can no longer hunt. As she muses on loss and her shattered life, Claudia desperately tries to convince her to return to America with them and heal herself. Daciana seems seduced by the offer, until she throws herself into the fire and kills herself.

See also  How to watch the Vanderpump Rules season 11 finale live online for free

“When she meets Daciana, she is awakened to the fact that in a way she can live a happy life and meet others,” says Hayles. “But I do think there is a threatening feeling in her. When I see her jump into the fire, I think she knows in the back of her mind that in some sense it is very difficult to be happy.

Anderson admits that this scene was difficult to film because of its significance for Claudia’s outlook on life and the selfish needs it exposes in Louis.

“It was so heartbreaking for me to see Delainey play in that moment and see the heartbreak in Claudia,” he says. “I think Louis wants her to be some version of happy. He wants her to be happy and to be what he wants her to be for himself.”

Thanks to Larry Horricks/AMC

Meanwhile, Louis also chases away Lestat’s persistent phantom. He first appears during Louis and Claudia’s nomadic journey through Europe and makes a chillingly affectionate threat about his plan for revenge on Louis: “I’m just waiting for you to be happy.” So hurry.”

But Reid, who is quite limited in what he can say about Lestat’s role in the new season after his alleged death, acknowledges that the Lestat viewers in the premiere are just the version living in Louis’ head and that he sees him as played like that.

“So I was curious to think about how, if Louis is being chased by him, which version of Lestat is he being chased by?” Reid says, “What part of Lestat does he remember? And maybe it’s the parts he doesn’t want to talk about. Maybe it’s the bits he can’t forget. If you watch Lestat in this episode, you will see Louis having a conversation with himself. And it’s hearing his internal dialogue echoed back by the person he potentially loves the most, but who also feels the most guilt and self-loathing.”

After a laugh, Anderson interjects. ‘He’s my Jiminy Cricket. It was quite funny on set, because in that scene I turned around to look at what Sam was doing, and it was like I had a parrot on my shoulder.

While the march to Paris in the 1940s takes up most of the premiere, Jones cautions the audience about the significance of the titular interview in modern-day Dubai between Louis, Molloy (Eric Bogosian), and the newly unmasked Armand (Assad Zaman). ) not to be underestimated.

See also  The Spanish 'Robot Dreams' 'Jasmine & Jambo' Top Quirino Awards

“The idea that Louis would take control of this interview and leverage it with a little bit of self-reflection goes out the window,” he says. “The interview in season 2, what happens between these three characters, is just as important, if not more important, than what happens in the past.”

In the season 1 finale, Armand revealed himself to be a 512-year-old vampire and the love of Louis’ life, a revelation that certainly changed the dynamic of the room. Now Armand no longer has to hide the influence he has on Louis, who is still compiling his own memory of events from the last century. During the premiere, Armand begins attending the interviews and makes snide comments and real-time changes to Louis’ comments, all of which Molloy adamantly ignores as off-the-record. Zaman says the verbal sparring with Molloy is Armand’s failed attempt to force him into submission.

“At the end of the first episode, Armand sees that it no longer works,” says Zaman. “He thought that his presence as a vampire at this table, who could kill Molloy at any moment, was enough to deter him or do what Armand wanted. But he is resilient.”

Near the end of the premiere, Armand agrees to be an on-the-record participant in the interview, if only, Zaman teases, to exert control in new ways in the episodes to come. On the other side of the tape recorder, Bogosian says he drew on personal experience to explain why Molloy won’t give in to this new pressure on his interview.

“There are some uncanny parallels between me and this character,” he says. “I don’t like being bullied. I was bullied as a child, and when I’m bullied now, I give what I get. There’s nothing that scares me more than being bullied, and I can feel Armand trying to nudge me, but that doesn’t shut me up. It will confuse Molloy and be even more persistent if they dig into this.”

Whether set in the past or present, fans of Rice’s book can see the season as a march toward inevitable doom for these characters, who have danced around some very tragic events on the horizon. But as the season progresses, Jones doesn’t think about it that way.

“This season is ultimately about repentance,” he says. “I don’t think it’s about disaster. We don’t build on that. We build a bunch of vampires with a lot of baggage, who start to turn inward and ask themselves, “What am I responsible for?” Louis thinks he had a good idea why he had to do this interview, and I think he will come away from it this season with a completely different understanding.”

Share This Article
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *