Kaylee Bryant Wants Hosie To Happen, And 26 Other Behind-The-Scenes Facts They Revealed
"I have so many people constantly telling me that watching Josie on the show has made them feel more comfortable in themselves."
This week, Kaylee Bryant squeezed us into her schedule to talk about their role as Josie Saltzman on Legacies. As a huge Josie fan, I couldn't think of a better way to spend a morning than talking to Kaylee about The Vampire Diaries, Hosie, our favorite books, and more! Here's everything we talked about:
1. What was your audition for Legacies like?
My audition process was very interesting because they kept a lot of it a secret. I had no script and a fake character name. And then I had my second audition, a chemistry read, which Jenny Boyd [Lizzie] wasn't even at. I walked in and immediately just flat-out asked, "This is for the twins, right?" So it was long, but short and intense at the same time.
BuzzFeed: Wait, did you know which twin you were going to be playing?
I initially auditioned for Josie, and then during chemistry reads, they started asking me to read for Lizzie. And then we had our final callback where I finally met Jenny and we both read for both roles. They never told us [who was playing who] until Jenny had her appointment to go dye her hair blonde.
2. What's a typical day on set like?
Gosh, it changes every time. If it's a busy day on set, we're talking like 8 a.m. call time where we spend about two hours on hair and makeup and go straight into rehearsals. If it's a big sort of episode that involves stunt work and wire work, you're talking about doing maybe two scenes in a day. But if it's an average day, we can do anywhere from three to five scenes and we can start at 8 a.m. and wrap at 8 p.m. It really depends. I'm surprised if I'm not surprised.
3. You’ve said you’re a huge fan of The Vampire Diaries. Josie played Elena in the musical episode — what was that like?
It was surreal for sure. They had talked a little bit about doing a musical episode since Season 1. And I always thought that they were joking when they talked about doing Salvatore: The Musical!, so when they said Josie would obviously play Elena, I was like, "Hahaha." And then I got the script and realized I actually was playing Elena. The musical aspect of it was the easy part. The difficult part was, I think, getting into the iconic Elena attire and trying to feel normal. Because we have a lot of crew members that worked on The Vampire Diaries, and they kept coming up to me being like, "This is weird. I feel weird."
4. Do you have a favorite scene you’ve filmed with Courtney Bandeko (Finch) this season?
I really did love the scene that we had in the town square [when] we got on a moped. There were so many fans in the town square that were huddled in the rain — it was pouring rain, freezing cold — trying to snap photos of us. And it was kind of one of those surreal moments where it felt full circle, that I was on a Vampire Diaries spinoff in town square. It was a lot going on, but it was a lot of fun. It's always fun working with Courtney.
5. You and Danielle Rose Russell (Hope) also have amazing chemistry — what’s your favorite scene you’ve filmed together?
Oh gosh, we have a lot that are pretty amazing. Honestly, I'd say [Season 3] Episode 14 — we finally got to do a lot more scenes together. And it's always fun, especially when it's Josie, Lizzie, and Hope, because we have so much history character-wise. Any time you really get to dive into that, we love it.
6. I know Josie and Finch are working through some things right now, but I gotta ask — how do you feel about Hosie?
I love it. Danielle and I loved the idea of Hosie starting from Season 1, and we kept asking and asking and asking for it. So it's kind of funny and full circle that now the fans have kind of taken our side with things, and now they won't stop asking for it. All we want is this beautiful, dynamic relationship. And I think that the fans want that as well.
BuzzFeed: Yeah, I mean, people have even been asking me about Hosie, and I don't work on the show!
Oh, I'm sure! [Laughs] Obviously I love it, though.
7. Is there a particular Josie moment you’re really proud of?
Josie has a scene coming up in Episode 18 — or 19? — I don't know, but it's good. It's sort of the pinnacle of everything that Josie has felt over the past three years kind of culminating into one moment. So, I'm excited for people to see it.
8. You recently came out as queer. How has playing Josie, who’s pansexual, impacted you personally?
I felt a lot of pressure when I initially booked Josie because I was still figuring out who I was and what my label was. And playing a character who was so comfortable in who she was, it was inspiring [to me] in a way that I think a lot of other people watching the show have been inspired. I have so many people constantly telling me that watching Josie on the show has made them feel more comfortable in themselves. It's kind of amazing that we all have the same experience in that having queer representation makes you more comfortable.
9. You’ve been vocal about your Asian identity, and your character has spoken Japanese on the show. Did you have a hand in incorporating that into Josie’s character?
No, not at all! So, I spoke Japanese a few times on the [Instagram] Live and one of our writers, Penny Cox, saw me speaking Japanese and immediately went to Brett [Matthews] and was like, "We need to make this happen somehow." And then all of a sudden, I had a script in my hands. So it was a surprise, but a fun one.
BuzzFeed: Are you fluent in Japanese?
Gosh, no! I'm barely fluent in English. [Laughs] I would say I speak at the level of maybe a second-grader on a good day, though.
10. If you could pitch any storyline for Josie, what would it be?
I always joke that I want an episode that takes place overnight. That way, we all have to be wearing pajamas the entire episode. I just want to wear some comfy clothes for a whole two weeks, that's my main goal. So we can have a pajama episode, that's my pitch.
11. What's it like getting into character for Dark Josie scenes?
It's different in the sense that I know Josie so well. And knowing Josie in turn makes me understand Dark Josie. I have a whole different playlist of music that I listen to for Dark Josie — and I have the wig, which helps a lot with getting into character.
BuzzFeed: Well, now I have to ask what music is on that playlist!
I think "Bury a Friend" by Billie Eilish is a great one for Dark Josie. Also, "Villain" by K/DA is a prime example of a perfect song for Dark Josie, so I listen to that one as well.
12. What's your go-to Starbucks order?
Plain black iced Americano. Aria [Shahghasemi, who plays Landon] says I drink coffee like a sociopath. [Laughs]
13. What TV show are you currently binging?
I just finished watching Alice in Borderland, which is a Japanese show on Netflix. And I know Feel Good Season 2 just came out, so I think that's my next binge.
14. Damon or Stefan?
Stefan! They're both beautiful and I love them very much, but I'm Team Stefan when it comes to Elena.
15. If you could work with anyone from The Vampire Diaries, who would it be?
Ian Somerhalder has a lot of dogs. So, maybe I want to work with him for the sole reason of just talking about dogs. [Writer's note: Kaylee revealed she has two rescue dogs, one whom was sleeping right next to them during the interview! Kaylee described the dogs as "both complete and total nuts," but said she misses them about five minutes after getting into the car to go to work.]
16. Do you think you’re most similar to Josie, Lizzie, or Hope in real life?
I would say I'm an eclectic mix of the three. I can be very headstrong like Hope, very outspoken like Lizzie, and I try to be as loving as Josie, but sometimes that doesn't always work. But I'd like to think all three.
17. Is there a role people would be surprised to learn you auditioned for, but didn't get?
I've been auditioning since I was eight, so there's quite a few Disney Channel shows and movies. And I'm sure people would be surprised because I think I auditioned for like, all of them. It's very funny, one of the first jobs I ever booked in television was Kickin' It with Leo Howard [Ethan]. Talk about full circle — going from being 12 years old and having no idea what I'm doing to being a series regular on [Legacies] and welcoming Leo to the set.
18. Who's your favorite Disney princess?
Oh, I love Mulan so much. She was, like, my first crush ever. I also love Moana, but it's Mulan 1,000%.
19. If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
I mean, I do eat rice every day. So maybe just white rice — you can make rice into candy and...yeah, let's go with rice.
20. If you were stranded on a deserted island and could only bring one book, what would it be?
Oh no! I recently read The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers, and I really enjoyed that book. Oh god, Is that the one that I want to bring, though? I mean, I really enjoyed it and it has many different aspects to it. I don't know. Or should I go with Harry Potter? I go through different genres too, like right now I'm in a big sci-fi phase, but other times I'll go the opposite direction and only read biographies. Yeah, that's super hard. I don't think I would know!
21. On that note, what's your Hogwarts house?
Initially, when I was younger, it used to just be straight-up Slytherin. And now, I recently took the Sorting Hat Quiz and I got Ravenclaw. So I'm going to go with Slytherclaw.
BuzzFeed: What's Josie's house?
Josie would be Slytherin. She tries very hard and, you know, not everyone in Slytherin is evil. She just, you know, has her way of going about things.
22. Has anything super funny or embarrassing happened to you on set?
I trip a lot on set. I get scared very easily — if I come around the corner and somebody is walking the other direction, I get scared. Everybody knows to walk slowly around me because I get scared so easily.
23. What's your wildest fan story?
I've had people cry before. And I'm an empath, so if somebody starts crying, I immediately am like, "Please don't cry, because I'm gonna cry." And then it turns into this whole thing. Once we were shooting in the town square and this young girl with her mom started crying, and I just hugged her and I didn't know what to say. So there's a lot of that. There's also the occasional, "Where's your twin?" and...I don't have one, sorry! But yeah, I would say the people who cry always throw me for a loop.
24. How do you unwind after a long day?
I have an hourlong drive home from work, so I usually listen to a lot of music. And by the time I get home, taking off all of my makeup is very therapeutic. Because over time, we're working 13-hour days, 16-hour days, and it's just powder constantly building up on my face. So, washing my face is always very therapeutic. And then just laying back and reading a book and petting my dog is the best.
25. Is there a celebrity you get told you look like a lot?
Most recently, Sara Waisglass [from Ginny & Georgia and Degrassi]. We follow each other on social media now and I completely messed up because I don't know how Twitter works at all. I forgot that there's a DMing interaction, so we followed each other and I was like, "Oh, that's nice." And then just recently, I saw that she had messaged me being like, "We're twins! We should be friends!" And I immediately messaged back, "I'm so sorry, let's be friends!"
26. Who's your biggest celebrity crush?
Oh, I have so many. But consistently since I saw Orphan Black, Tatiana Maslany. Hands down.
27. Finally, have you ever caught someone watching a TV show or movie that you're in on a flight or anywhere else?
We were all, as a cast, flying to — was it New York Comic Con, or San Diego Comic Con? — one of the Comic Cons. And we were all sitting there and we saw that Legacies was actually on the airplane as an option. And we were all just uncomfortably staring at each other. Yeah, that was surreal.
Be sure to catch Kaylee in Legacies, which airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET on The CW!
Note: Some answers have been edited for length and/or clarity.