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'Vampire Diaries': Ian Somerhalder Almost Wasn't Damon Salvatore

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Mar 13, 2012 | 8:41am EDT

Vampire Diaries Ian SomerhalderWhile any Vampire Diaries fan will tell you Ian Somerhalder is Damon Salvatore, the show's producers weren't always so sure. During an interview at March 10's Paleyfest, Somerhalder admitted he "bombed" his first TVD audition.

"Whether it was too much coffee, that B12 shot I gave myself, who knows? I bombed it," the actor said. And while his coworkers and fans alike now know him as the "Smolderholder" thanks to his signature devilish gazes, screenwriter Kevin Williamson pulled Somerhalder aside after his audition and said, "'That wasn't good, was it?'" Luckily, Williamson had some faith in Somerhalder and was able to come back and test for CBS big wig, Les Moonves.

"I had to go back and re-test because all our big boss, [CBS president] Les Moonves, did not buy it, the fact that I was Damon. And I wanted to jump off of a building," he said. But it was the spirit of competition that gave him the boost he needed. He saw a fellow actor auditioning for the role and says he thought, "You know what? Screw this. This is mine. This is not his."

Thankfully, his strategy worked and he became the alluring Salvatore brother women of all ages lust after every week on the CW. The Vampire Diaries returns Thursday, March 15 to what will no doubt be thunderous applause and a few dramatic swoons - and we can thank Somerhalder for that. 

Source: Us Weekly
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