The Vampire Diaries Death Toll 'Will Be Extreme,' But Who Will Be Left Standing for Season 3?

Brace yourselves for some good (and not-so-good) news, Vampire Diaries fans: Executive producer Julie Plec says that Season 3 of The CW’s just-renewed hit will be “the Season of the Originals.” Which means — drumroll, please — recent Mystic Falls imports Klaus (played by Joseph Morgan) and his brother Elijah (Daniel Gillies) should see the light of another season.

Both Gillies and Morgan were initially locked in as recurring characters on TVD, but Plec playfully told reporters on Wednesday evening that the decision about the actors’ probable promotions to series regular status will be “made when we break story for Season 3,” which happens after Plec returns from her post-season getaway.

As for the rest of the cast, their collective fates still hang in the balance — though Plec did take a moment to “dispel any [specific] number value” floating about the interwebs.

“All I’ve ever said is that there will be some severe and tragic consequences, and that the loss of life will be extreme over the last couple of episodes,” she offered. “We set this ritual in motion early on, and it needs several sacrificial elements, so if it happens — and where it happens, and when it happens, and if it goes off without a hitch — there will be a lot of loss of life.”

Michael Trevino (who returns to Vampire Diaries with a new attitude this Thursday at 8/7c) was also on hand to chat with the press, and gave a tiny tease that may have actually revealed Tyler’s fate. “It’s like Tyler went through army boot camp,” he said of his slightly more subdued character. “I wanted to switch it up, but only subtly.”

TVD‘s resident werewolf proceeded, “I don’t know where they’re going to go with Tyler in Season 3, but there have to be [more] changes. Hopefully we can get into explaining what he was doing when he was gone, and who was he involved with.” So it’s probably safe to say good ol’ Tyler will make it through the ritual. (Or not. These Diaries folks are masters of the tease.)

And if your beloved character doesn’t make it to the end of the season finale — which, let’s face it, is always a possibility in Mystic Falls — Plec teased that they may not be gone for good: “We do have ways of letting our audience see their fan favorites again…over time.”

How are you feeling about the TVD death toll now? Think Tyler and the Originals are in the clear? Let us know in the comments!