With only five episodes left until fans say goodbye to The Originals, viewers will either witness a happy ending or see the city of New Orleans go down in flames -- it all depends on how Danielle Rose Russell's character, Hope, decides to handle her emotions.
"Hope is extremely powerful," Russell, 18, tells ET over the phone ahead of episode nine, "We Have Not Long to Love." "No one has seen what she can do. So, in the next coming episodes, we get to see how powerful she truly is, after all, [she has all] this combined magic inside of her."
Fans last left off watching Hope remove The Hollow from the Mikaelsons and redirecting it back to her. Now, Hope faces the consequences of trying to bring her family together, coming face-to-face with Elijah (Daniel Gillies) for the first time since her mother Hayley's (Phoebe Tonkin) death.
"Seeing Elijah for the first time this season -- especially after losing his memories and not being a part of her life for a very, very long time -- she has a lot of built-up anger about the situation," Russell explains. "But she does take out a lot of what she’s feeling on Elijah. If she was in her right mind she would understand what happened and the reason why he did what he did. But, of course, she’s angry, rightfully so."
Russell hadn't worked with Gillies before the episode, but the moment between the two was "a long time coming," she says. In the preview for episode nine, fans see Hope taking her anger out on her uncle in a very aggressive way.
"He’s an incredible actor and has a very interesting way of approaching scenes that was fascinating to experience with him," she shares. "The scene itself is definitely emotional. There’s a lot of anger, there’s a lot of hurt, there’s a lot of betrayal and sadness, on both parts -- at each other and within themselves. And you see that in the preview, Hope kind of explodes. But it’s very deep-rooted emotion."
That strong, deep-rooted emotion will continue to be seen in the rest of the episodes, as Hope begins to explore her full potential as not only a hybrid, but an all-mighty witch.
"Her family will play a part in helping her deal with everything that is going on, now that they can all be with each other again," reveals Russell. "Hope is in such grief that I think she’s in that emotional state where she doesn’t really care. She just wants to take down whatever it was that destroyed her mom. So I think it's reached a point where Hope doesn’t care about herself as much anymore. She just cares about protecting her family and protecting those that are still there for her. There is a lot of internal conflict that’s going to happen with her and a lot of struggles."
The Mikaelsons, however, have always stuck by their family's side no matter what, and will continue to be there for Hope during this tumultuous time.
"You’ll see Hope interact with each character, and the next four episodes after nine are very family-oriented," she teases. While the show is coming to its conclusion after five seasons, for Russell, Hope's journey will get explored in Legacies, the Originals spin-off that has been given a series order at The CW.
"Hope’s story is going to continue, so for her there isn't a lot of pressure of how she has to end [at the end of the season]," Russell says. "All these other characters have been on the show for so long, and even on The Vampire Diaries; their endings are very important for their characters. Because Hope’s story is going to continue, I think the writers did a very good job in giving her her end, but also kind of propelling her into what’s to come and her legacy."
"I’m really excited to continue Hope’s story, there is a lot to tell with her and her character. I’ve already read the first episode of Legacies and I love the tone it’s taking," she reveals. "It’s a different kind of show and it’s different than The Vampire Diaries and The Originals because they have the same concept holding them together, but they were also very different. Legacies is its own show and it takes on a younger twist to the supernatural world. It’s like an X-Men meets Hogwarts, a much different vibe than what you’ve seen in both shows."
As Hope continues to guide The Originals fans to a new chapter, she says there is still so much left to tell in the last four episodes.
"Hope is known for being a mysterious being in this universe. Someone that no one has ever seen before. I think a lot of people fail to realize that there is a 15-year-old girl who is behind that, and who is very human too and is going through a lot right now," Russell expresses. "She’s very loving and very caring and only wants to do the best she can. But, of course, she’s going to make mistakes along the way, like anyone does -- especially when you're that age. Unfortunately, the consequences of her mistakes have cost her a lot more. There’s a lot to her; there are many different sides to her, and you’ll see whether or not she’s the downfall or savior of New Orleans."
The Originals airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.