TV Show Salaries & Earnings: The Vampire Diaries

Sucking Your Blood Out of Boredom or Excitement?

All right, we can’t lie about this. We love The Vampire Diaries, and although this is pretty much a teen drama, we were hooked since the beginning. 

Overall, we are not the type of people to neglect or avoid a series or movie because of its genres and tags but rather watch a couple of episodes until we’re able to provide a well-informed review based on what we believe. 

Once we jumped in with this teen TV show, we gotta admit we were a bit predisposed to hate it because, well, although there are some like “Pretty Little Liars,” we usually prefer some like “Sherlock” or even “Peaky Blinders.”

To keep it simple, teen dramas aren’t usually our states, but with The Vampire Diaries, let’s just say we were hooked to the usual vampires, drama, and some romance in the process to try a different series and we are happy it wasn’t a disappointment. 

The show is very popular even after finishing in 2017. It is considered one of those teen dramas you must watch if you’re into the genre, especially since the series is based on “The Vampire Diaries” novels by L. J. Smith, which truly deserves a read as well. 

But well, we are here to talk about the series and help you decide whether to binge it or not and learn a few valuable details even if you have or have not watched the series. 

Typical Plot or Vampire Story Worth Watching?

If we’re honest, it is hard to dive in with this series and expect a different plot from what a teen drama and fantasy series can offer you in the 21rst century, but we are no one to actually tell you whether the plot was the same as always. 

However, if you are open to some personal and, of course, subjective opinion, here it is: It was quite different. 

Although it remains loyal to the usual vampire story with the girl and boys looking for her, the plot twists that come with it change everything, and you will need to stick to the plot for now if you haven’t watched it yet.

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Damon Salvatore and Stefan Salvatore, two vampire brothers who hate each other. 

Damon, the older brother, is the selfish and dangerous vampire who drinks human blood without thinking. In contrast, Stefan, the younger brother, is the kind and compassionate type to the point of killing animals to avoid harming others. 

These two brothers end up bringing a teenager girl, Elena, into the supernatural realm that she was kept from as a child. 

This young woman surrounds herself with human friends, but also not so human, who are ready to fight the enemies and hunters that lurk in the shadows and are, without them knowing, looking for an opportunity to take them down. 

As if things weren’t difficult enough, the two brothers end up falling for the same girl, Elena, and a continuous fight for who they claim to be the love of their lives begins in Mystic Falls, Virginia.

The town is home to many tragic events that have impacted the lives of people and their loved ones, while Elena is forced to choose between the two brothers or something else involving more complex characters, diverse cast, and maybe even sex education?

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The drama, supernatural and romantic setting is quite common in terms of what you would expect from, so far, a love triangle. However, we promise you this is more than just a romance. 

Inside Production & Its Cast Members

Unlike some recent series, The Vampire Diaries ran for quite some time, and it also ended in a year where other popular shows followed. 

But how did this show run for so long? Was it thanks to the members involved? You bet!

Developed by Kevin Williamson and Julie Plec, they also were involved in the role of executive producer along with Leslie Morgenstein, Bob Levy, Caroline Dries, Melinda Hsu Taylor, Chad Fiveash, ad James Stoteraux. 

Plec also worked as the main producer for the show. 

On the next, Michael Karasick, Darren Genet, John Smith, Datan Hopson, and Rob C. Givens handled the cinematography. 

For the production companies, Outerbanks Entertainment, Alloy Entertainment, CBS Television Studios, and Warner Bros. Television were involved, being the last two part of the distributors as well. 

Although The Vampire Diaries aired on other platforms and channels, The CW was the original network, and you can enjoy the show on Netflix and other streaming services today. 

Where are we left with the cast, though? 

  • Nina Dobrev as Elena Gilbert.
  • Paul Wesley as Stefan Salvatore.
  • Ian Somerhalder as Damon Salvatore.
  • Kat Graham as Bonnie Bennett.
  • Candice King as Caroline Forbes.
  • Zach Roerig as Matt Donovan.
  • Michael Trevino as Tyler Lockwood.
  • Steven R. McQueen as Jeremy Gilbert.
  • Michael Malarkey as Lorenzo ‘Enzo’ St. John.
  • Matthew Davis as Alaric Saltzman. 

Other secondary cast members like Claire Holt, Joseph Morgan, and Daniel Gillies might be known for the series “The Originals,” which is a spin-off from the one we are covering today.

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Reception & Money: Was It THAT Popular?

If you have a show running for almost a decade, you know it must have done something right to keep going for that long. 

In the case of The Vampire Diaries, the first season was considered just a slow-burning introduction to the actual action of the series, which is why even critics like Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic rank it with 71% and 57, respectively. 

However, this exponentially increased during season two and from here onwards. 

With an average score of 80-90%, the lowest-rated was the fourth season, but surprisingly, the second and final season did amazingly well with 100% in Rotten Tomatoes, while the third season remained strong. 

But what about public opinion on other platforms? Most people loved it but hated it as well after a certain point. 

You see, there’s a turning point in the series we don’t want to spoil for those who haven’t watched it, but if you did, you sure know which one it is. 

When this leaves all this aside, however, the series was very steady in its ratings during the first five seasons until it fell from season six until the last one. 

However, the viewership rank didn’t go lower than 140 based on a 193 as the highest corresponding to season two. 

Overall, the show just did poorer during the last few seasons, which is usually natural and what you would expect on some occasions. 

But enough of ratings and viewers, let’s get into other numbers: Budget and earnings.

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Well, unfortunately, we will owe you this information. 

The CW is very private when it comes to disclosing its earnings and how much they are investing (per episode) in their series. 

However, back in 2013, ads were about $55,000, which led to an earning of above $1 million for the show only back then. 

This means that, of course, the earnings surpassed millions, but we don’t know the specific number. As for the budget or details about how much the companies earned, we will be missing those. 

But What About The Cast? – Their Salaries

As usual, actors and actresses earn more based on how long the series continues to run. 

This is why salaries always vary, and it can be a bit tough to come up with specific details about each sum. 

However, that might not be the case for later seasons. 

During seasons one, two, and three, details about how much the cast was earning were never disclosed, so we can’t share these details with you. 

From there, the salaries kind of hit the $15,000+ mark. 

For actors like Steven R. McQueen, he was earning about $20,000 before leaving the series, while Michael Trevino hit a similar mark per episode. 

By the last season, main cast members like Kat Graham were earning about $35,000 per episode, while Ian Somerhalder and Paul Wesley earned $40,000.

Nina Dobrev also earned about $40,000 for her last episodes and is, in fact, the one with the highest net worth to this date. 

What about the secondary members? 

Most of them were paid around $2,000-5,000 per episode though specific details were never disclosed, even for the latest episodes. 

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6 Bloody Facts of The Vampire Diaries

  • Nina Dobrev did poorly during her first audition but then sent the crew a new audition tape since she was sick during the initial one, so she wanted to make up for it. She succeeded.
  • Several cast members wanted the role of Damon Salvatore, including Paul Wesley and Michael Trevino.
  • The co-creators and producers of the show thought the show was going to tank.
  • Paul Wesley and Ian Somerhalder wore the director role for some episodes.
  • There’s actually a “Fifty Shades of Grey” connection in the TV series.
  • In the beginning, Nina Dobrev and Paul Wesley hated each other off-screen.

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