COVINGTON, Ga. — For the first time in 13 years, a show from “The Vampire Diaries” universe will not appear on The CW’s fall schedule.
Officials of The CW Television Network recently announced “Legacies” was one of six series to be canceled by the network. The show that began in 2018 as the second spinoff of “Vampire Diaries” now ends after four seasons. The other spinoff was “The Originals,” which aired from 2013-2018.
"'Legacies' being cancelled is definitely not the news that fans of the series want to hear. Also, from my experience as the film liaison for the city of Covington, it is sad to see them leave," said Community Development Manager DJ Waller. "The 'Legacies' crew was phenomenal to work with whenever they’ve filmed in Covington. They’ve contributed to our welcome center on numerous occasions by providing movie props to our museum, which in 2021 welcomed 73,393 visitors. We are lucky to have a community that welcome filming, but we are also lucky to have a charming community where productions love to film."
“Vampire Diaries,” which aired from 2009-2017, and “Legacies” were both filmed in Covington and helped grow the city’s tourism by leaps and bounds.
“We saw a great increase during the filming of ‘In the Heat of the Night,’” Covington Regional Visitor Center Coordinator Ron Carter said in a 2021 interview with The News about tourism, “but nothing like what we’ve seen for ‘Vampire Diaries.’”
Covington had more than 73,000 tourists visit the area in 2021, compared to only 20,400 guests in 2011, Carter said. About 75% of those tourists last year were “Vampire Diaries” fans.
Financially, film tourism generated about $3.7 million in local sales tax revenue in 2019, Carter said.
That money is often spent at the iconic Mystic Grill Restaurant, located on the Square, which is known for being featured on the hit television series. Or fans will drop a few dollars to go on a tour via Mystic Falls Tours or Main Street Trolleys — both companies that specialize in all things of “The Vampire Diaries” universe.
Though the show must come to an end, its passionate fanbase is always welcome to stop by Mystic Falls, Virginia, a.k.a. Covington, Georgia, and see where the vision of “The Vampire Diaries” creators Kevin Williamson and Julie Plec was brought to life.
“We have had quite a run with ‘The Vampire Diaries’ trilogy,” said Newton County Chamber of Commerce President Debbie Harper. “While it is sad to see it end, it has further strengthened the chamber’s trademarked brand ‘Hollywood of the South’ for our community. We look forward to building off the film-tourism success and continue to welcome fans from all over the world.”
In addition to “The Vampire Diaries,” Newton County has been the site of hundreds of film and television projects since 1954. The most notable television series filmed in Covington include “The Dukes of Hazzard” (1978), “In the Heat of the Night” (1988-1995), “The Vampire Diaries” and “Sweet Magnolias” (2020-present).
Three productions filmed in Newton County have won Academy Awards, including Best Supporting Actress, “My Cousin Vinny;” Best Short Film, “The Accountant;” and Best Original Song, “Selma.”