Nina Dobrev hadn’t read Stephen Chbosky’s award-winning novel, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, before she auditioned for him—via Skype from the Atlanta set of the CW’s The Vampire Diaries, no less—for a part in the film adaptation he wrote, directed, and produced. The skills she mastered playing a double role on Diaries (she’s both Elena Gilbert, a young girl caught between two vampire brothers, and Katherine Pierce, a heartless vampire the brothers knew and loved in the 19th century) no doubt helped her seal the deal. Video-conferencing from his computer in Pittsburgh, Chbosky was immediately bowled over by Dobrev’s ability to slip in and out of character without missing a beat. “I’ll never forget watching you do the scene from your dressing room,” he tells Dobrev at the start of this interview. “You’d be running with it, and there would be a knock on the door and a ‘Hey, Nina, we need you in five minutes,’ and you’d say, ‘No problem’ and click right back into our scene. You did it brilliantly. It still blows my mind.” In Perks (which costars Logan Lerman, Emma Watson, and Ezra Miller, and hits theaters September 15), 23-year-old Dobrev plays Candace, the older sister of a shy high school freshman (Lerman) coming of age.
Off-screen, the native Torontonian is often globe-trotting for fun or philanthropy. She comes to Miami regularly, has been to director Michael Bay’s North Bay Road manse for one of his big New Year’s Eve bashes, and vacationed with her Vampire Diaries costars at the Fontainebleau. Farther afield, Dobrev has traveled to Kenya as an ambassador to Free the Children, a charitable group that provides clean water, health care, and sanitation to thousands of people in seven countries, including Haiti and China. As for her personal life, she’s in a relationship with
Diaries costar Ian Somerhalder, on whose arm she’ll likely be at the official Perks world premiere at the Toronto Film Festival this month. “I genuinely think that the movie is so powerful, so heartbreaking, and so hopeful,” says the actress, who was born in Bulgaria but moved with her computers-pecialist father and artist mother to Canada at age two. “It’s an unbelievable film, and I think people are going to feel the power when they watch it.” Chbosky, who calls himself one of Dobrev’s biggest fans, recently spoke with her about the highly anticipated film and the glittery life of a modern-day Hollywood up-and-comer.- Read More