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Interview With the Vampire Showrunner Breaks Down That Major Change From the Book in “The Thing Lay Still”

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AMC’s Interview With the Vampire closed out its first season on Sunday with “The Thing Lay Still” seeing Claudia (Bailey Bass) and Louis (Jacob Anderson) moving forward with the plan to kill Lestat (Sam Reid) and free themselves from their brutal maker once and for all. But while the entire first season of the Anne Rice adaptation deviates from the novel of the same name in various ways, the season finale —and particularly Lestat’s death — saw a major departure from the literature. Now, series showrunner Rolin Jones explains why the change was necessary.

Warning: spoilers for the season finale of Interview With the Vampire, “The Thing Lay Still”, below.

In the episode, as suspicion about the vampire family grows, Lestat decides that they need to leave New Orleans and Claudia capitalizes on this to launch her plan to kill him. The family ends up hosting a decadent Mardi Gras celebration, using it to lure a select group back to their townhouse for slaughter. Lestat ends up tricked into drinking blood laced with laudanum and arsenic — just as he does in the book — but instead of it being Claudia who slices his throat, the series has it be Louis who mortally wounds his lover. For Jones, the reason for that was simple: murder is Lestat’s love language.

“For Lestat, his love language is murder,” Jones told Variety. “So, who else should it be than [Louis]?”

Of course, fans soon learn that Louis doesn’t actually kill Lestat, he’s merely severely incapacitated him and thus allowed himself and Claudia to escape to Europe, but it’s a move that sets things up for Season 2, which will see the pair arrive in Europe during World War II.

“That sets up what Paris is all about,” Jones said. “Remaking yourself, and a second — or, in this case — a third act for our vampires. Can you put behind you questionable decisions and start anew, and become the person that you want to be? They go through something in Eastern Europe that could — for vampires that aren’t as strong — have been the end.”

Has Interview With the Vampire been renewed?

The critically acclaimed series has already been renewed for a second season.

“The scope and breadth of this show, and what Mark and Rolin have delivered, is just stupendous,” Dan McDermott, president of original programming for AMC Networks and AMC Studios, said in a statement. “They have rendered the rich and vibrant world of Anne Rice’s Interview in a wonderful way, and we’re incredibly proud. From the set build to production design, costumes, and more — no detail was overlooked. This stellar cast delivers powerful performances that emotionally connect us to these characters and their humanity. We look forward to sharing the final product of this extraordinary effort with audiences in just a few short days and are thrilled that this story will continue. This is only the beginning of an entire Universe featuring enthralling stories and characters that capture the spirit of Anne Rice’s amazing work.”

Episodes of Interview With the Vampire are now streaming on AMC+.

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