Ian Somerhalder and Paul Wesley met after landing their roles on "The Vampire Diaries."
The CW show ended in 2017 and the two stars have remained close over the years.
They teamed up for a bourbon brand called Brothers Bond, which was released in 2021.
Even though it has been three years since the hit CW series ended, the costars remain close. They even teamed up for an alcohol brand called Brother's Bond Bourbon, released in 2021.
Here's a complete timeline of Somerhalder and Wesley's friendship.
Wesley and Somerhalder met at a fitting for their characters' vampire fangs, shortly after Wesley was finally cast on the show
The casting directors picked Wesley days before filming for the show began, after he had already auditioned for Stefan multiple times. They originally passed on Wesley for Stefan because they thought he was too old for the part.
But after casting Somerhalder, who's four years older, as Damon, they agreed to consider Wesley.
His chemistry read with Dobrev solidified his spot as the brooding younger Salvatore brother.
When Wesley and Somerhalder met, they instantly clicked, which made it even easier for them to play siblings on "TVD."
"Paul and I met in the valley," Somerhalder recalled during an interview with Entertainment Weekly. "It was a fitting for our fangs. It was very cool, we met, we gave each other a hug. It was like, 'Wow so we're brothers. Here we go.'"
"They took a gamble. Casting a show is a risk. You never know if it's going to work," Wesley added.
Cocreator Julie Plec attributed their instant connection to Somerhalder, who "very quickly took Paul under his wing, brother to brother."
"It's easy to fall in bro-love with Ian Somerhalder," Plec told EW. "So they were able to spark to each other quickly."
September 10, 2009: 'The Vampire Diaries' premiered on The CW
The series premiere of "TVD" garnered 4.8 million viewers.
Although the show was based on a fantasy book series written by L. J. Smith, the show creators took plenty of creative liberties when adapting. They cast actors with different appearances than their book counterparts, introduced new characters, and excluded some characters from the novels.
At the time of the show's release, Somerhalder was known for his role as Boone Carlyle on the hit show "Lost."
Meanwhile, Wesley had appeared on shows like "Everwood" and "Army Wives."
Their roles on "TVD" would turn them into A-listers with devoted followers around the world.
Forget Stelena and Delena - Wesley and Somerhalder agree that the show's most important relationship was between the Salvatore brothers
Although the love triangle was a central part of "TVD," Stefan and Damon's bond was the glue that held the series together - especially following Dobrev's departure from the series after season six.
"Ian and I both agree that the best love story is between Stefan and Damon," Wesley told Entertainment Weekly. "Ultimately, their brotherly love-and-hate relationship is probably the most interesting thing."
He continued: "They had killed each other, they love each other, they hate each other, they fight over the same girl. That was one of the most complex relationships in terms of depth and layers."
Wesley shared similar comments about the siblings during an appearance on "Watch What Happens Live" in December 2019.
"Ian always says that the greatest romance on the show is the two brothers, and I agree with that in many ways," he said. "Just because it was not a sexual romance, it was still a romance."
Throughout their time filming 'TVD,' Somerhalder and Wesley shared goofy and candid photos from the set
In March 2012, Somerhalder posted a manipulated photo of him and Wesley wearing their characters' daylight rings.
Wesley then photobombed Somerhalder in a 2014 selfie with costar Matt Davis (Alaric Saltzman).
Somerhalder and Wesley gave their best "blue steel" impressions in a photo taken inside Damon's car in January 2016.
The following month, Wesley complimented Somerhalder's biceps that were seen in a photo of them rehearsing.
July 2015: Wesley and his 'brotha from anotha motha' teamed up for a T-shirt campaign with a portion of the proceeds going to charities
A fan named Kathryn Kij came up with the winning design for the shirt, and the stars released two different shirt styles.
Somerhalder and Wesley also called a few fans who purchased the product.
January 10, 2017: Somerhalder left a little gift for Wesley so he wouldn't forget him once their time on 'TVD' ended
The actor gave Wesley artwork of Damon and planted it in his office, which led to a fun interaction on Twitter.
February 8, 2017: To mark their last day on the set of 'TVD,' Wesley shared a photo of him and Somerhalder standing in front of Damon's 1969 Chevy Camaro convertible
"That's officially a wrap," Wesley captioned the photo. "One last pic of the brothers in front of the Camaro. To the fans, thank you for being a part of this journey in our lives. We couldn't have done it without you.
March 10, 2017: The series finale of 'TVD' aired
The show concluded after eight seasons and the episode nabbed 1.19 million viewers.
During the series finale, Stefan sacrificed himself and gave Damon the cure to live as a human. The final scene of the show (rightfully) centered on the brothers, as they had a heartfelt reunion in the afterlife years later.
In a full-circle moment, the final line - "Hello, brother," spoken by Damon - was a callback to the character's first line of the series.
The finale made fans and Wesley emotional. The actor was so moved that he cried at how "powerful" the conclusion was.
March 20, 2017: Days after the last episode of 'TVD' was released, Somerhalder was feeling nostalgic and shared a throwback photo with Wesley
"The Salvatore boys on a British Airways flight on my birthday Dec, 8th 2009 from LA to London... The beginning. Wow. Love this guy, we've been through it together. @paulvedere here's to drinking copious amounts of French wine at 35,000 ft and trying to envision what our futures would become. Love you man xo Ian," the actor captioned the post.
Wesley also posted the same photo of himself with "smoldeypants" days prior.
December 9, 2018: Wesley celebrated Somerhalder's 40th birthday by joking that he was saying goodbye to his teenage years
"No longer a teen. Happy 40th brother. @iansomerhalder," he wrote.
February 24, 2019: The costars and their wives hung out together at a pre-Oscars party
September 26, 2019: Somerhalder revealed that he and Wesley had their own bourbon brand in the works
"WITH passion, hard work, and an uncompromising quest/thirst for quality, we have arrived!" the actor said.
"We want to share with you something very special and dear to us," he continued. "You've given us so many wonderful years as these characters and we want to bring you something to enjoy that brings back some great memories and some good times to come!"
Considering that bourbon was the go-to drink of choice for Stefan and Damon on "TVD," it seemed like a natural collaboration for the costars.
"We drank bourbon on the show," Wesley told People. "That was sort of the staple of the series, for those who haven't seen it, and we drink bourbon too, we love bourbon, and we bonded over bourbon, so [we decided to] start a bourbon company."
December 2, 2019: During an appearance on 'Watch What Happens Live,' Wesley was asked about his bromance with Somerhalder and said his costar is 'a very loving guy'
"Ian's a very loving guy," Wesley said. "We hug a lot. We have cuddled. I'm sure we cuddled up on a plane or something."
"We hug each other, he gives me kisses on the cheeks all the time," he added.
December 3, 2019: In an interview with Girlfriend magazine published in late 2019, Somerhalder described Wesley as 'my little brother'
"Stefan was such a beautifully played character who had really amazing depth and layers. This has been a 10-year journey with him," Somerhalder said. "He's family. He's my little brother. We talk every day."
January 5, 2020: The costars reunited at a Golden Globes after-party
Somerhalder, Wesley, and Dobrev were all present at the 2020 InStyle and Warner Bros. 77th annual Golden Globes Awards after-party, which took place at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in California.
May 27, 2020: Their website for Brothers Bond went live and crashed due to an influx of traffic
September 12, 2020: The stars said that drinking bourbon together 'solidified' their friendship
November 20, 2020: Wesley said that the bourbon brand was a 'real labor of love' and described it as his and Somerhalder's 'baby'
"It's been so fun. This is something that we created," Wesley told People of the brand, which began shipping in March 2021. "It's not just like, 'Oh, we're putting our names on it.' This is our baby."
He added: "We created this mash, this taste, everything. The name, the label. I mean, we did everything. I'm just excited. And I hope it takes off the way that we think it will."
Read the original article on Insider