|“||Father... I love him!||”|
—Sonja, declaring her love for Lucian
Sonja is a Vampire whose story is pivotal in the Underworld series. She is the daughter of Viktor and the lover of Lucian, as well as a member of the Vampire Council. She is portrayed in the original Underworld by Jázmin Dammak, and in Underworld: Rise of the Lycans as an adult by Rhona Mitra and as a child by Olivia Taylforth.
Underworld: Rise of the LycansEdit
Sonja, daughter to the powerful Vampire Elder, Viktor, was born in the year 1210, three years after the birth of the first Lycan. Nothing is known of her mother, Ilona, except that she died in labor. At a very young age, Viktor gifts Sonja with a pendant, which she wears most of her life.
An exceptional warrior and a member of the Vampire Council, Sonja is being groomed by her father for an eventual position as an Elder, although she seems very uninterested in the prospect. Viktor insists that Sonja attend Council meetings, and fulfill her duties to the Coven, but Sonja ignores him and spends her nights chasing Werewolves and guarding the castle. She trained alongside the Death Dealers growing up, and feels more loyalty to her duty as a Vampire warrior than as a Council member. While it is never explicitly stated that she is a Death Dealer, she just as skilled and deadly in combat as any of them and performs all the usual duties of a Death Dealer.
At some point, Sonja meets and falls in love with a Lycan slave, Lucian. Lucian is also enamored with her, and the two begin an affair. How the affair begins is never explained, though Lucian and Sonja are both born in the same general time period, and so grow up around each other. In front of Viktor and the other Vampires, Sonja is cold and uncaring towards Lucian. In private, the two secretly wed each other, and spend their days together. Things begin to unravel when Sonja realizes she is pregnant, and that they cannot continue to hide their affair for long. Frightened of her father's wrath(the fear later proved justified), Sonja makes plans with Lucian to run away together. Before she leaves, she agrees to give her seat on the Council to Andreas Tanis in exchange for his silence, and a key to release Lucian from his shackles.
Before Sonja and Lucian put their escape plan into effect, Viktor discovers the secret passageway the two have been using to meet in secret. The Elder begins to suspect that something is amiss, and he bites Sonja, drinking her blood and learning the truth of her affair with Lucian. Lucian is able to escape the castle with a small group of fellow Lycans, but Sonja remains behind. Lucian returns for her, but Viktor and the Death Dealers were lying in wait. Despite Viktor's ill treatment of Sonja and Lucian, Sonja refuses to kill him. Instead, she reveals her pregnancy to him, hoping that this will make him accept Lucian as her husband: it was a tragic miscalculation. The horrified Viktor captures both Lucian and Sonja, and condemns them to death for their affair.
Lucian is chained to the floor in a large empty room, while Sonja is tied to a stake. While Sonja watches, Lucian is beaten by Soren with a silver whip. Once Lucian's torture is completed, Viktor and the Council members leave the room. A hole in the roof is then opened, exposing Sonja to sunlight and burning her alive. Lucian fights against the chains holding him down and screams her name as she dies. Later, once the moon rises, he is able to take on his Lycan form, and escapes the castle with her pendant. Lucian continues to wear the pendant as a reminder of Sonja for the next 600 years, until his death at the hands of Vampire Regent Kraven.
Sonja's death is a catalyst for Lucian's personal vendetta against the Vampires, although the slave rebellion truly started because of a desire for freedom.
Notably, Sonja has two different appearances between Underworld and Underworld: Rise of the Lycans. In Underworld, she is shown to have blonde hair and green eyes, while Rise of the Lycans shows her with dark brown hair and brown eyes. This is due to monetary constraints and the director waiting too long to find a suitable brunette actress. The character was written to have darker features, similar to that of Selene. The physical similarity between the two women is meant to be one of the reasons why Viktor spares Selene's life after killing her family, Selene reminding him too much of his daughter for him to bring himself to kill her.
Sonja's memory is kept a secret from Selene and the new Coven in general, with the only survivors of the original Coven being the Elders, Soren, Kraven and Andreas Tanis. It is likely that Viktor forbade Tanis from ever speaking of her. As a result of all this secrecy, Selene does not learn about Sonja's existence for nearly six hundred years.
It should be noted that in Underworld, Lucian calls Sonja his "bride," but that there is no other proof that the two were actually married, other than their devotion to each other. Lucian didn't even know that she had been pregnant until only a few hours before her death.
An alternate version of Sonja's history is told in the non-canon novel Blood Enemy, written before the release of Underworld: Evolution. In this novel, Sonja is not a dark-haired Death Dealer, but a blonde-haired princess. Lucian, still a slave, is drawn to Sonja for her compassionate nature, but there is no indication that they had ever spoken before the events of the novel, Lucian even chiding himself for the thought of engaging her in conversation. Even after witnessing her mother, Ilona, being decapitated by a group of mortals led by the charismatic Brother Ambrose, Sonja nevertheless feels sympathy for them when reflecting on their constant awareness of their own mortality after she and Lucian are forced to hide in an old tomb in an abandoned monastery. When Lucian transforms before her, despite his own shame at appearing in such a manner before a Vampire, Sonja treats him the same as she had when he was human, later reflecting in private to herself that it is unfair that a noble soul like Lucian's should be condemned to life as a slave simply because of his birth.
The two become closer after Lucian saves Sonja's life from an attack by Brother Ambrose, who had rallied the local peasants in a vendetta against the 'demons' (the same attack that killed Sonja's mother). Lucian wraps Sonja in a tapestry to conceal her from the sun and takes her to a nearby abandoned monastery so that they can hide from their pursuers until nightfall. Despite the standard prejudice against Lycans, Sonja clearly treats Lucian with respect, warmly thanking him for saving her and working to remove the silver that has recently infected his blood after he was shot. When Lucian reveals his heritage as having been captured by Vampires during a raid on his parents' group of wild Lycans, Sonja expresses disbelief that a noble spirit such as his could ever have been a renegade, later assuring him after he has transformed into his wolfen form that no part of him could be repugnant to her.
When Viktor declares that Sonja is to be married to Marcus Corvinus's son Nicolae, whom Sonja holds a strong distaste for, Sonja and Lucian begin a secret affair in an abandoned chapel in Viktor's palace. Sonja later learns of her pregnancy, and the two 'marry' in an informal private ceremony between themselves alone. However, their attempt to escape that night is betrayed by Leyba, a jealous Lycan slave harboring romantic feelings for Lucian. Although Viktor initially restricts himself to simply whipping Lucian, when Sonja declares that Lucian is the father of her child, Viktor has her killed.
During Lucian's later fight with Nicolae, Nicolae mocks Lucian by asking if Sonja was as talented in bed as she was in other matters, Nicolae's callous dismissal of Sonja helping to provoke Lucian's transformation into his wolfen form without the aid of the moon for the first time.
Sonja shares some personality traits with Selene, in that they are both cunning and dedicated warriors, who show little remorse for their enemies and are willing to risk their own lives for the good of their coven, or those they love. However, Sonja is not so slavishly devoted to her life as a warrior as Selene is. She is not as loyal to the coven and does not blindly follow their doctrine.
Sonja has a somewhat warmer personality, with Rhona Mitra describing her as being more "sassy" compared to Selene. She also appears to be more compassionate and mindful of other's feelings, such as when she asks Lucian if he truly feels nothing when he kills the Werewolves, and by her decision to spare Viktor and attempt to persuade him to accept her love for Lucian, which ultimately proved to be her downfall (Selene, on the other hand, didn't hesitate to kill Viktor).
Sonja is shown to be quite a fearless fighter; the only time she appears to show any sign of fear is in the moments before her execution.
Sonja first met Lucian when they were children and, despite the fact she was Vampire and the daughter of an Elder, while he was a Lycan slave, she appeared drawn to him. As adults, Sonja and Lucian fell deeply in love, risking Viktor's wrath to secretly meet whenever they could. Sonja treated Lucian coldly in public, but this was merely a ruse so as not to arouse suspicion. Sonja, unlike most Vampires, views Lucian as a person and admires his courage and compassion. She often expresses concern for his well-being, asking him how he really feels about killing Werewolves and even begging him not to transform to save her from Werewolves, knowing he would be punished. She struggles to hide her grief when Lucian is whipped for transforming and is openly devastated when he is tortured a second time at her execution. Sonja acts as a source of strength and guidance for Lucian; she willingly defies her father to help Lucian escape and also expresses no regret when they are captured, dismissing Lucian's belief that it is his fault for rebelling against the Vampires, with Sonja stating that he would "not be who you are" if he hadn't stood up for his fellow Lycans.
Sonja loves her father, but they do not always see eye to eye on matters. Sonja is often defiant towards Viktor and seems unenthusiastic about the destiny he has chosen for her. She also knows he has the ability to be cold-blooded and ruthless - it is for this reason she tries to dissuade Lucian from escaping (initially) and keeps her relationship with him a closely guarded secret, knowing how Viktor would react. She does, however, underestimate the lengths Viktor will go to preserve the Vampire species; she appears to be shocked when Viktor callously announces he will have Lucian killed and also refuses to kill Viktor during her escape attempt with Lucian, instead trying to reason with him. She seems to hope that by telling Viktor of her pregnancy, he will accept her love for Lucian and the fighting can end. she again appears to be in a state of shock when Viktor reacts with disgust and sentences both her and her lover to death. Tragically, Sonja's love and respect for her father, and her faith in his love for her resulted in her death.
Powers & Abilities Edit
As with all Vampires, Sonja displays superhuman abilities. It is likely that her powers are greater than those of other Vampires her age due to her being a pureblood. Though she was not shown to be stronger than her father, she bested him in swordplay due to her experience.
She is skilled with many types of medieval weapons, such as crossbows and swords, her skill with the latter being great enough to outmatch her father in a sword fight. The sword she typically uses also has a spring-loaded mechanism in its cross guard, that she can use to launch shurikens by swinging her blade.
- Superhuman Endurance: Sonja can take a fair amount of damage from other Immortals and recover quickly.
- Superhuman Strength: She exhibits incredible strength, which she uses to overpower other Immortals. She is able to push Viktor backwards, and force Tanis against a wall.
- Superhuman Healing: Sonja's wounds heal with superhuman speed.
- Superhuman Speed: Sonja is able to move with tremendous speed, and can kill other Immortals before they even realize they've been attacked.
- Superhuman Agility: Sonja is able to jump high into the air, and is shown backflipping over the heads of her enemies.
- Early production stills show Sonja with yellow eyes in Vampire transformation. However, in the final film, her Vampire eyes are always blue.
- Sonja's name is both the Scandinavian and Russian varient of "Sophia", from the Ancient Greek σοφία (sophia), meaning "wisdom".
- Like Selene and Amelia, Sonja's great physical beauty has been noted upon in the novelizations, as all have such been compared to "Grecian Goddesses".
- According to promotional material attached to the film, Sonja was two years younger than Lucian, who was just short of being 200 years old during the main events of the film, whereas the novelization puts her age at 208 years old, which would make her 7 years younger than Lucian.
- According to the Rise of the Lycans novelization, along with other keepsakes, Sonja was given the pendent under the impression that it had once belonged to her mother.
- In Rise of the Lycans, Sonja rode a female warhorse named "Hecate", after the Grecian goddess, Hecate. In Blood Enemy, her horse was named "Clio", after Clio, the muse of history.
- According to director Len Wiseman, the difference in Sonja's hair color between movies occurred because he waited too long to hire an actress for the part in the original Underworld, and then couldn't find a brunette one. Model Jázmin Dammak was asked to dye her hair darker for the part, but refused to do so unless she was paid more, which the film's small budget could not allow. Wiseman could not even afford a natural-looking wig, so the matter was dropped, and Dammak did the scene as a blonde. Wiseman stated that he was amazed at the number of people who noticed the difference in Sonja's hair and eye color between the two movies.
- Rise of the Lycans director Patrick Tatopoulos stated that Sonja is based directly on Selene. This is obviously proven true, as both Selene and Sonja have similar appearances and personality traits. They both also wear very similar clothing, and actress Rhona Mitra has stated that her outfit was based on Selene's in the first two films.
- In the Rise of the Lycan commentary, the filmmakers expressed a hope that one day, a special edition of the first film could be released in which the new Sonja's death scene will be edited in.
- After Lucian's death, Selene finds Sonja's pendant, and her Lycan-Vampire Hybrid lover, Michael Corvin, wears it to symbolize that he and Selene are the modern day Lucian and Sonja.
- Main article: Sonja/Quotes
For a complete list of images of Sonja, please visit the Sonja images category.
|Marcus Corvinus' Strain|
|William Corvinus' Strain|
|Vampire / Lycan|
|Vampire / Corvinus Strain|
|Lycan / Corvinus Strain|
|Blood Enemy Characters|
|Lucian - Sonja - Viktor - Raze - Andreas Tanis|
|Soren - Sabas - Orsova - Coloman - Kosta - Luka - Xristo - Sandor - Ivan - Ilona - Janosh - Covasha family - Malvina - Ulrik|
|Weaponry of Underworld: Rise of the Lycans - Silver - Shurikens - Swords - Crossbow - Knives - Whips|
|Vampire - Lycan - Immortal - Human - Werewolf|
|Castle Corvinus - Elders' Ship|
|Corvinus Strain - Vampire Council - Death Dealer - Vampire Elder - The Chain - Blood Memories - Old World Coven - Moon Collar|
|Items - Soundtrack - Score - Novel - Comic - Quotes - Videos - Images|
|Selene - Lucian - Sonja - Viktor - Kraven - Nicolae - Soren - Leyba - Brother Ambrose - Grushenka - Ilona - Leonid Florescu - Marcus Corvinus - Yoshio - Diego|
|Vampire - Lycan - Immortal - Human|
|Silver Mine - Castle Corvinus - Crypts - Strasba - Keep - Ördögház - Budapest|
|Death Dealer - Vampire Elder - Old World Coven - Blood Memories|