Vampire Academy Co-Showrunner Explains Major Rose & Lissa Book Change

The co-showrunner of the brand new Vampire AcademyTV show, Julie Plec, explains a big difference between the Vampire Academy books and the show. Vampire Academy tells the story of a dhampir (vampire-human blend) named Rosemarie “Rose” Hathaway and her moroi (Romanian vampire) princess best friend, Vasilisa “Lissa” Dragomir. At St. Vladimir’s Academy, where they go to school, Rose is in training to be Lissa’s guardian. Meanwhile, the dhampir falls in love with her teacher, Dimitri.


The Vampire Academy TV show is based on a six-book series of the same name, of which there was also a film adaptation in 2014. The movie didn’t perform well enough at the box office to get a sequel, so only the contents of the first novel in the series has ever been adapted for the screen. Sisi Stringer plays Rose, Daniela Nieves plays Lissa, and Kieron Moore plays Dimitri. Plec, the creator of The Vampire Diaries, and Marguerite MacIntyre, an actor in The Vampire Diaries as well as a staff writer on the spinoffs, serve as co-showrunners.

In an interview with TVLine, Plec reveals that a difference between the books and the TV show is how the storyline between Rose and Lissa unfolds, and she explains the reasoning behind the change. In the books, the beginning of Rose and Lissa’s friendship is told in the form of backstory. As she and MacIntyre worked together to adapt Vampire Academy into a TV show, they decided to have the early stages of the friendship actually happen on screen in real time, as opposed to purely in retrospect. Check out Plec’s explanation below:

So much of Rose and Lissa’s friendship — what they experienced growing up, the things they saw, the trauma that happened to them, the losses they suffered — was told as part of their backstory. The first thing we did was ask, ‘Why would we want to tell that as a memory when we could watch it happen in real time?’ So we backed up the beginning of the story in the context of the girls’ friendship, while still doing other elements of the story that were specific to the first book.

Of course, there were some changes made between the Vampire Academy books and the 2014 movie, but they were more about mood and style than plot. The movie opted for more classic high school aesthetics, but stuck pretty closely to the plot of the books. On the other hand, the show seems to be more faithful to the medieval vampire look and feel established in the books, but is making some crucial plot changes. So, it will be interesting for fans of the book to see how sticking to the visuals of the books but diverging from the Vampire Academy book story will play out.

Since Vampire Academy only got one movie adaptation, fans haven’t yet gotten the chance to see what an adaptation of the full series would be like. Whether there will be a Vampire Academy season 2 is still completely up in the air, and will likely depend on how the changes made between the books and TV show appeal to fans and critics. For anyone who’s curious about how the books compare to the show, the first four episodes of Vampire Academy have been released directly onto Peacock. The next six episodes of Vampire Academy will be released every Thursday, until the finale on October 27.

Source: TVLine

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