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On Location with Joseph Morgan

The Originals star shares the charm of shooting in Atlanta

British-born actor Joseph Morgan had already been living in the United States when he won the role of Klaus Mikaelson on the CW’s vampire series The Originals, but moving to Atlanta to film the show was still an adjustment for him. “I felt like it wasn’t home because I moved from another city,” he says. “It all felt alien and strange to me.”

But it didn’t take too long for Morgan to feel right at home.

“It sounds a little cliché to say, but I really do find that the majority of people are very friendly here,” he explains. “Just passing people in the street, they’ll give a wave when they say good morning, and I’ve gotten really used to it. So when I go to New York or some other place, I try and do the same thing and people look at me like I’m crazy.”

This brand of Southern Charm doesn’t end when Morgan gets to work, either. The Originals follows three characters who began on The Vampire Diaries, and Morgan says that along with the storylines, they also brought an easygoing working environment. 

“I want to be able to go to work every day and for it to be fun, rewarding and exciting—and almost every day I feel that,” he says. “We’re a really hard working crew, we work nine months a year with a lot of 15-hour days, but it would be so much harder if there was any tension, or atmosphere of negativity on set. Thankfully we have a really great time.”

And while Morgan counts visits to Atlanta’s High Gallery and bike rides along the BeltLine Park among his favorite off-hours activities, he’s also quick to point out that days on-set are never dull affairs.

“I’m working all week, so when I come home all I want to do is hang out with my wife and my dogs,” he says. “But my life isn’t so boring. Someone can ask what I did today and I can say, ‘I tore two guys’ heads off, had a huge fight and went running through the woods before I even made it home.’”