‘The Vampire Diaries’ lost a beloved member of its family on Feb. 20, when 27-year-old Sarah Jones was tragically struck by a train while filming a movie. Now, the show’s producer Caroline Dries has spoken to HollywoodLife.com about why her death has inspired a potentially life-saving movement from the show’s cast and crew.
Vampire Diaries fans were shocked when Nina Dobrev and Ian Somerhalder revealed via social media that a young member of their crew, Sarah Jones, had been struck by a train and killed while shooting the film Midnight Rider in Georgia. Now, the show’s producer Caroline Dries has spoken to HollywoodLife.com about the inspiring campaign that Nina, Ian, Paul Wesley, and more are promoting to honor her memory and — hopefully — save some lives in the process.
‘Vampire Diaries’ — Caroline Dries Talks Crew Member Sarah Jones
Immediately following Sarah’s death, Nina reached out to her roughly 4.5 million Twitter followers, urging them to sign the Slates for Sarah petition that seeks to include Sarah in the annual ‘In Memoriam’ tribute ceremony during this weekend’s Oscars. However, Caroline explains to HollywoodLife.com that there’s far more to it than that.
“Yes, [the cast and crew] would like to have her name at the Oscars’ ‘In Memoriam’ section,” Caroline says. “But more so, [the campaign] is about awareness about Sarah specifically… and also, more awareness about set safety. [It’s about] having the leadership roles on set really step up and say ‘no.’ What we said to the crew the day after we learned [about Sarah’s death] was ‘no shot will ever be as important as you, as your friends, as your family… as you are as people. This is not the end of the world. This job will never be the end of the world. You are always the most important person; the most important thing.'”
‘Vampire Diaries’ EP — How You Can Join The Movement
The Slates for Sarah Facebook page — which was started by Sarah’s friends and colleagues — focuses less on the Oscars, and more about raising awareness about on-set safety issues. Nina, Ian, Paul, and more have urged camera crews all over the world to send pictures of their directing slates; creating a viral movement that will hopefully inspire others to focus on on-set safety.
“Camera departments all over the country and even all over the world have been sending us pictures of their slates, which is what you slap in front of the camera to say what scene you’re on, and who the director is,” Caroline continues. “It’s been this viral movement. It’s been this moving, overwhelming tidal wave of emotion. It’s been really cool. I clicked on the [Twitter] hashtag and was like, ‘Oh my gosh!’ There’s so many pictures of so many crews. It’s amazing.”
We at HollywoodLife.com continue to be inspired by the TVD Family, and their dedication to producing a great show while also focusing on the “little people” involved behind the scenes. What do you think, HollywoodLifers?
— Shaunna Murphy