'Vampire Diaries' spin-off to film in Conyers

CONYERS -- Can't get enough of "The Vampire Diaries"? Fans of the show should be delighted to hear that a spin-off will begin airing next season on The CW Network, and it will be filmed in Conyers.

Titled "The Originals," the spin-off will focus on the original family of vampires, introduced in an April 25 episode of "The Vampire Diaries," and is set in New Orleans.

The CW officially announced the following day that "The Originals" had been picked up.

"The Vampire Diaries" production team is currently on break and once they come back to work the logistics of the series will be discussed, said Gina Hartsell, project manager for the Conyers Rockdale County Economic Development Council. A portion of the April 25 episode was shot in Olde Town Conyers, she said.

"We're very excited," she said.

Filming is expected to begin in the summer when "The Vampire Diaries" also begins filming, she said. Portions of "The Vampire Diaries" are also filmed in Conyers, though the show is most often associated with Covington, she said.

Hartsell said the benefit of having an ongoing project in town can best be seen when sales tax revenues are examined. A project like "Prisoners" starring Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal filmed in the Stanton Woods neighborhood for three months, not including pre- and post-production, she said.

"You really don't get to see that until the finance people are doing the numbers on sales tax for the previous year," she said, but added that vendors indicate a lot of money stays local.

Clara Deemer, director of tourism for Newton County, said "The Vampire Diaries" will film at least one more season and possibly two seasons, in Covington.

Jessica Lowery, whose Mystic Falls Tours business has been wildly successful, showing fans filming sites of "The Vampire Diaries," said she plans to expand the tours to cover Conyers filming sites as well. The tour for the spin-off will be called Mystic Falls Tours Take 2.