Skip to main content

Joseph Morgan created one of TV’s favorite villains in Klaus Mikaelson. His performance in The Vampire Diaries was such a hit among fans, he and the Mikaelson siblings starred in The CW’s first ever spinoff series The Originals. The show reached its natural conclusion in 2018 after five successful seasons, but how much did Morgan get paid for the show? Let’s just say he could not work for a while and be comfortable.

Joseph Morgan as Klaus Mikaelson sitting in an ornate chair and pressing his fingertips together with a stern look on his face in a scene from 'The Originals'
Joseph Morgan as Klaus Mikaelson In ‘The Originals’ | YouTube

Did Joseph Morgan direct ‘The Originals’?

Klaus in The Vampire Diaries was introduced as an ultimate adversary. He caused constant chaos for the Mystic Falls crew, but Klaus’ humanity poked through from time to time. His affection for his siblings and his feelings for Caroline Forbes proved he was capable of compassion and love, despite the hundreds of years of violence and anger.

Creator Julie Plec felt Klaus’ story—along with the stories of his siblings—were just too interesting to pass up. To that end, The Originals series premiere aired in 2013, right after The Vampire Diaries Season 5 got started.

Klaus survived the entire series, along with Elijah Mikaelson, played by Daniel Gillies. After five seasons of Klaus evolving into a better man, the two brothers died together in the series finale.

Throughout the five-season run, Morgan ended up directing three episodes of The Originals: Season 3 episode 17, “Behind the Black Horizon,” season 4 episode 4, “Keepers of the House,” and season 5 episode 3, “Ne Me Quitte Pas.”

Joseph Morgan net worth

The Vampire Diaries and The Originals made Morgan a leading man, but he had a lengthy resume before landing the role in The CW hit series. He studied at the Gower College Swansea and the Central School of Speech and Drama. His first credits were in the 2003 TV movies Eroica and Henry VIII, the latter of which also starred Emily Blunt. He made his feature film debut in 2003 as well, playing William Warley in Master and Commander.

He then acted in TV series Hex for five episodes in 2004. The same year, he played Philotas in Alexander. Other credits include Mansfield Park, Mister Lonely, Silent Witness, Doc Martin, and Casualty. And he appeared in a lot of period pieces as well, preparing him for his Klaus’ many flashback scenes.

The 39-year-old played Judah Ben-Hur in the Ben-Hur mini series, which co-starred Emily VanCamp (they dated for a year after). Morgan acted alongside Henry Cavill, Luke Evans, and Kellan Lutz in 2011’s Immortals, and then it wasn’t long before he landed the role of an immortal himself in The Vampire Diaries.

After The Originals ended in 2018, Morgan had a small recurring role on TNT’s Animal Kingdom. His next series regular role was in Peacock’s Brave New World, now canceled. Thanks to his years of experience (but mostly The Originals), Morgan is reportedly worth $3 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.

Joseph Morgan as Klaus Mikaelson and Daniel Gillies as Elijah Mikaelson stare at each other in a shot from 'The Originals'
Joseph Morgan as Klaus Mikaelson and Daniel Gillies as Elijah Mikaelson in ‘The Originals’ | YouTube

Who Is Joseph Morgan’s Wife, Persia White? They Met on ‘The Vampire Diaries’

How much did Joseph Morgan make per episode for ‘The Originals’?

Being the lead of The Originals came with perks. The paycheck being one of them. Morgan was reportedly paid $35,000 per episode of The Originals, according to The Whisp.

That pay isn’t far off from what the stars of The Vampire Diaries made per episode. Ian Somerhalder reportedly got $40,000 per episode for playing Damon Salvatore, according to Celebrity Net Worth. And Nina Dobrev and Paul Wesley reportedly made around the same.

Since Brave New World‘s cancelation, Morgan has been working on his Morgan White shop with wife Persia White, whom he met while filming The Vampire Diaries Season 3. And he’s no doubt looking for his next acting challenge.