I was invited by Disney to attend the #QueenOfKatwe Event. Although all of my expenses were paid, all opinions are my own.
Where are my Once Upon A Time fans?! I know you’re out there and are really excited for Season 6 to begin. While I was in Los Angeles a few days ago, I had the awesome opportunity to not only preview the first episode of Season 6 but also to sit down for a Q&A with the show’s Executive Producers, Eddy Kitsis and Adam Horowitz. Both of these gentlemen were so nice and excited to hear what we thought of the first episode of season 6.
We jumped right into the questions with Eddy and Adam who were both very genuine and open to chatting with us.
Can you tell us a little about the Untold Stories?
Adam: In the past we’ve seen the characters within the storybook who have been effected by the curse. Their stories intersect with our characters, in the case of characters whose happy endings have been ripped away by the Evil Queen and her curse. With the Land of Untold Stories, it’s a little bit different, and what we’re exploring is characters who have run away from their stories, who have left them and gone to this other place. Now they find themselves in a storybook in stories that may have been put on pause and resumed. So rather than stories that necessarily that have ended in a certain way, these are stories that were kind of midstream that for whatever reason these characters didn’t want to see it continue.
Do the characters then have the control in their stories? Or is there somebody running that?
Eddy: It’s the same sort of control that I think any of the characters have had, which is, that they have free will in their lives are moving forward, but there are forces on antagonism, like for our storybook characters it was the Evil Queen when she casts that curse. For these characters, many of them met forces on antagonism that are like, I don’t want to deal with this, and then went somewhere else.
What was the selection process like for choosing the untold stories? And how deep are you going? And how much of that time will be focused on those untold stories?
Adam: Well, we have a dart board!
Eddy: For instance, the second episode is The Count of Monte Cristo and The Count of Monte Cristo was a master of revenge. You’re going to see the story unfold where The Count of Monte Cristo, we realize has a past with the Evil Queen, who we also know was interested in getting revenge. When we bring in new characters it is the fun of telling that story. Also though, how it filmatically links back to our characters. I think what you’ll see in this first bunch, or actually the first 10 episodes is it really is just our characters. The villain is obviously the Evil Queen, Rumple is not looking very heroic right now, and Zelena is caught between two sisters. We’re going to see some chaos in Storybook unfold, but really it’s a lot of it is going to be between our characters.
Adam: When we talk about, and again this is the first ten episodes, we’re not talking about it as a distinct arch, in the way we’ve done the last few years, it’s where our arch is in production right now. Kind of design some smaller arch and larger ones that kind of go over the season. There’s an early episode where we’re going to be seeing Cinderella again, for example, we haven’t seen her in a number of seasons. Way back in season one when we first met her, she had this story about what happened in her childhood, giving it out with Rumple, but what it really was, it was a reflection on what Emma was going through at that time. In the same way I think and hope that you’ll see a lot of these stories are doing the same sort of thing.
Eddy: For instance, that was Emma’s first happy ending she actually returned, it was episode four of the show and that was the very first time that Emma, at the end of it, decided to stay in Storybook. She saw herself through Cinderella. Well, what if someone can undo all the happiness you’ve done and would your life matter? So if you can’t get your own happy ending, and you’re faced with somebody out there that’s trying to undo the ones you have done, you know, what does that? That’s kind of what we start to explore.
What are some other characters we can expect to see this season, besides like Aladdin and Cinderella?
Eddy: We are going to be seeing Captain Nemo…..
Adam: Captain Nemo, Count of Monte Cristo, Cinderella, Aladdin, Jasmine, Jafar.
Eddy: We’re going to meet, the Evil Stepmom from Cinderella, we’re going to meet the wicked step sisters, or evil stepsisters. We’re going to see our normal and we’re going to see a lot more of Archie, this year, Jiminy Cricket.
Eddy: We’re going to see Elroy and the Dwarfs, our normal group of people.
Adam: You know what’s been really fun is kind of what Eddy’s just saying about these other characters who have been on the show in years popping back up is that in the last few seasons our characters have been going on journeys whether it’s to Neverland or the Underworld, now they’re back in Storybook trying to make a life for themselves there. So we’re trying to dig more into what daily life is, what normal is. In an early episode you’re going to see Snow White ask the question of what is normal. And how do we get back to it? And that’s something that she-she kind of strives towards and in doing that, you know, it allows us to kind of see these characters that we’ve grown to love writing for and hopefully the fans enjoy seeing as well, you know, pop in and out of all of their lives. And will hopefully kind of create that-that big sense of community in a sort of way.
Is it possible that some of your pairings that we really became attached to in the beginning of this show, you’re like, real life you don’t necessarily have a happy ending or a traditional happy ending.
Eddy: I think that absolutely true. I think this show has always been about a family. There’s a lot of romance and I think you’re going to see the first few episodes have a lot of that romance in them, but at the end of the day, the curse was broken. Family comes first on this show, and that is important to us. I think that also we try to do real life like Neil. Neil is Emma’s first boyfriend, we all have them, and you don’t marry them usually, you move on and you learn from them. And they become a how to of what not to do or what to do, but that’s what they were, and that was real to us.
Adam: Same with Regina and Daniel. There’s nothing untrue about that love or impure about it, but she moved on and she found love with Robin and, you know, and subsequent we lost him. To Eddy’s point it’s character roaming and experiencing things, and it’s not, it’s, the-the goal of the show has always been to not have it just be a pattern.
Eddy: That’s the question we’re going to ask. Or you’re going to see Snow White ask, what is a happy ending? Like everyone kind of expects it to be like in life, aren’t you always like, if only I got here I would be so happy. Then you get there and you look up and you go, I actually want men there. So there is no period at the end of this, so how do you live your life like that? You know, if you’re waiting around for here’s the three things that are going to make me happy and then I can just sit down and go, I’m happy, it doesn’t work like that. I think the characters have to slowly start to realize that as well because I think that a lot of them just believe that, you know, true love’s kiss we wake up and we go off into the sunset, except for there’s another episode the next week and a new marshmallow monster comes to town.
Can we expect any more Saviors this season?
Eddy: I’ll say is this without trying to spoil too much is, if last year we were exploring dark ones and that mythology, this year we really try to explore savior mythology. What it means to be a savior, what-who-who they could have been before, and who they could be next.
You’ve said over and over again, that this is a show about hope. For all of those fans out there who are still hoping that Robin Hood will come back, what do you say to them?
Eddy: I’d say dead is dead.
In terms of Regina sort of having this hope that Robin did have, you know, a peaceful ending and his soul wasn’t obliterated, is that something she’s going to pursue or is that sort of like a caption under the storyline?
Eddy: I think that’s it, I think that the thing about faith is you have to choose to have it and if you need proof then you don’t really have it. That was the lesson that she learned in this and I think that’s what Henry said. That is what we kept that together right?
Where do you find inspiration for the characters and their stories?
Eddy: You find them everywhere. You find them from life or TV shows. Like Walter White saying I like the life, absolutely was amazing. Michael Corleone closing the door when his wife realizes he’s gone to the other side. All these imagesstick in our mind. Rumple was always, he was, you know, he was part rock star, he was kind of this mixture of Bowie and Mick Jagger and then he’s the Godfather. You mix those two together. So you’ve got Mick Jagger if he was a crime boss and that is kind of where we came this from, you know. When we sat down, we always said it’s fairytales through a Bowie video which is why you see all these little touches. We draw inspiration for the characters everywhere and in real life. Like when we get to know the actors, Bobby is the best because there’s like a weave we call it. So like we’ll have one idea, and then Bobby would do something, and then in the next episode we’ll write that. Then, he’ll go another way, and if you notice, you find this really weird collaboration and sometimes it will be like even, Bobby and I share a lot of music tastes and we’ll find out we’re both listening to the same album. The same album I was listening to when we were writing it, is the one he’s listening to preparing it and that’s just coincidence. So you draw the inspiration, where you can and with six years of this cast you have a real shorthand with them.
With Zelena, we’ve seen her probably done more on the evil side of things than usual, but is it going to be easy for her to fall back into her evil side?
Adam: I think with Zelena, you know, she’s the Wicked Witch, like that’s, she’s pretty wicked and she’s dealing with the fact that now she’s got a kid, and she’s got those kind of complicated relationship with-with Storybook in general. There’s a plenty of people she’s killed and now who have grudges and things and all this.
What can we expect from Henry’s character?
Eddy: I think Henry is really becoming quite a hero. Henry did not seem like a little 10 year old at the playground that we saw in the pilot. Henry is growing up, he is going to be tested and I think that you’re going to see him really kind of grow into a little hero.
How many more seasons do you guys foresee being on the air?
Adam: How many do you want? We don’t have an end date, but we have an end plan, let’s put it that way. You know, like we know how we would want to end the show when the time comes.
Eddy: When that gets enacted! I also think Once Upon a Time is a show where season one was different from season two, then season three and we’ve reinvented it every year. Yet it all has fallen under an umbrella where people have stayed with us. So for us these characters, eventually some of them are going to have to have their endings and move on. Maybe there’s a world where this show continues to grow and move on and new people come in and out. But we don’t know. But for us, we’re not, we’re not at planning an ending right now, but we’ll see what happens.
THE HEROES FACE OFF AGAINST A DANGEROUS NEW ENEMY, AS EMMA COMES TO TERMS WITH WHAT IT MEANS TO BE THE SAVIOR, AND RUMPLE ENTERS BELLE’S DREAMSCAPE, ON THE SEASON PREMIERE OF ABC’S ‘ONCE UPON A TIME’
Oded Feher Guest Stars as Jafar and Deniz Akdeniz as Aladdin
Welcome to Storybrooke, a small town in Maine that you won’t find on any map. This town is full of magic, populated by fairytale characters once cursed by the Evil Queen Regina to live in our world—deprived of their memories and happy endings. Until Emma Swan came to town and changed everything. With the help of her son, Henry, Emma embraced her true identity as the daughter of Snow White and Prince Charming—the Savior destined to break the Curse. But even after returning everyone’s memories, Emma’s mission was far from over. With the Curse broken, Mr. Gold (aka Rumplestiltskin) was free to bring magic to Storybrooke. And magic ALWAYS comes with a price…
As “Once Upon a Time” returns to ABC for its sixth season, SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25 (8:00–9:00 p.m. EDT), on the ABC Television Network, so does its classic villain—the Evil Queen. Creators Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz (“Lost,” “Tron: Legacy”) invite you to join everyone’s favorite fairytale characters as they face-off against this supercharged enemy.
In the season premiere episode, “The Savior,” as our heroes set out to stop Hyde, Emma develops a mysterious side effect, and Storybrooke becomes a haven for people from the Land of Untold Stories. Meanwhile, Regina and Zelena embrace their newfound sisterhood by becoming roommates, while Rumple tries to free Belle from the sleeping Curse with the help of a stranger. In flashback, Jafar confronts an afflicted Aladdin in Agrabah, and a secret about the Savior is revealed.
“Once Upon a Time” stars Ginnifer Goodwin as Snow White/Mary Margaret, Jennifer Morrison as Emma Swan, Lana Parrilla as the Evil Queen/Regina, Josh Dallas as Prince Charming/David, Emilie de Ravin as Belle, Colin O’Donoghue as Hook, Jared S. Gilmore as Henry Mills, Rebecca Mader as the Wicked Witch/Zelena and Robert Carlyle as Rumplestiltskin/Mr. Gold.
Guest starring are Raphael Sbarge as Archie Hopper/Jiminy Cricket, Beverley Elliott as Granny, Oded Fehr as Jafar, Deniz Akdeniz as Aladdin, Tarun Keram as Emir, Peter Marcin as Chief, Farris Tyab, Jordan Ashley Olson as Young Nurse/Oracle, Giles Matthey as Morpheus, Thomas Gasior as Musketeer #1, Ingrid Torrance as Nurse Ratchet, Hank Harris as Dr. Jekyll and Sam Witwer as Mr. Hyde.
“The Savior” was written by Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz directed by Eagle Egilsson.