When MTV News caught up with Dobrev at the 2015 SXSW festival, the "TVD" star told us all about her plan to "take over the world, eventually." Of course, we didn't know it then, but Dobrev and "Vampire Diaries" boss Julie Plec had been plotting Elena Gilbert's exit from Mystic Falls for months. "I don't want to be identified only by this one thing," Dobrev said.
Dobrev's future plans for world domination include lots of yoga and perhaps even some behind-the-camera work.
"I do want to direct at some point," Dobrev told MTV News. "I want to produce -- I'm going to take over the world eventually. But I feel like if I do that, I want to do it in a different platform, separate [from 'The Vampire Diaries']... If I decide to take that path, I think I'd do it in a different way."
So there you have it, "TVD" fans. Dobrev's departure, though heartbreaking, is not completely unwarranted. For six seasons, we've watched the native Canadian grow tremendously as an actress, delivering knockout performances that made us laugh and ugly cry -- sometimes even at the same time.
But where does that leave "The Vampire Diaries" for season seven? The future may be uncertain, but Ian Somerhalder, Paul Wesley, Candice Accola and Kat Graham will all be back as series regulars next season, and TBH, we're eager to see how the show will move on without Dobrev at the helm.
With a renewed focus and exciting new character dynamics, there's hope for season seven yet. Sure, it will never be the same without Elena, but it doesn't have to be. Here's why Dobrev's exit might not be the worst thing for "The Vampire Diaries" after all:
Elena gets the ending she deserves.
Whether you're #TeamDelena or #TeamStelena, we all can agree on one thing: we want Elena to be happy. And we can't think of a better way for Elena's story to end than with her taking the cure and becoming human again. Because Elena was never cut out for the vampire life. She was always the human center of the show. If Elena does take the cure, then there's no way Damon would even consider risking her newly human life. In fact, we wouldn't be surprised if he would be the one to break things off. He'd want Elena to live her best life, full of adventures and worldly travels. Closing this chapter on Delena would be heartbreakingly fitting.
We'd get new character dynamics.
One of the best -- and most surprising -- parts of this season has been watching the chemistry between Damon and Bonnie flourish. Their friendship has become one of the best dynamics on the show, and we'd love to see season seven explore that. It doesn't even have to be romantic. Bonnie and Damon are magnetic on screen, and more focus on that would be a step in the right direction.
As for Steroline, Stefan and Caroline's newfound romance could make for some compelling drama next season. That, and more Steroline is never a bad thing. And with more focus on Caroline -- and hopefully a rejuvenated and inspired writers' room that will give her better material -- we think Accola, with her magical crying powers, could be a fantastic lead for the series. And if all else fails, "The Vampire Diaries" could just turn into a show about Damon and Enzo and I'd still watch it.
The show grows up.
"The Vampire Diaries" might always be known as a teen show -- ugh, blame the love triangle! -- but over the past two seasons, it's grown into something so much more than that. Dobrev's exit marks the end of an era, and with Wesley and Somerhalder taking the reigns as leads for season seven, "TVD" might actually get to dive into more adult themes. It would also give the writers an exciting new challenge. In a statement to MTV News, Plec says moving on sans Dobrev is "sad, nostalgic, scary, and yet super stimulating." With the love triangle finally in its rearview mirror, we're hoping "TVD" finds its new normal in season seven.