[03/04/12 - 05:00 PM]
Live at the Paley Festival: ABC's "Once Upon a Time"
By Jim Halterman (TFC)

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12:57 PM - Day three of PaleyFest starts a few minutes early with a classic clip from the infamous 1999 "Hush" episode of "Buffy The Vampire Slayer," as Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) and the Scooby Gang learn about Fairy Tale monsters, without being able to speak, of course. Hilarious and a great tie-in for today's panel.

1:01 PM - The Paley Center's Betsy Scolnick introduces the "Once Upon A Time" panel and thanks Hulu Plus for sponsoring today's panel. (Nine of the panels will be available on demand on Hulu Plus starting March 15.) Betsy introduces TV Line's Matt Mitovich as moderator and he, in turn, brings creators Edward (Eddie) Kitsis and Adam Horowitz out to intro the screening, which is tonight's "Dreamy" episode and an added bonus - the first ten minutes of next Sunday's episode, "Red-Handed."

1:58 PM - The screening is over so Matt welcomes our "Once Upon A Time" panel: Raphael Sbarge! Robert Carlyle! Lana Parrilla! Steve Pearlman! Adam Horowitz! Eddie Kitsis! Ginnifer Goodwin! Josh Dallas! Jennifer Morrison!

2:00 PM - Matt starts out by asking if there's a "Lost" reference in the "Dreamy" episode and Eddie explains that the number 42 pops up. (42 being one of the key numbers on "Lost.") Eddie also notes Apollo bars in a previous episode was pretty obvious and jokes they tried to get the smoke monster but he had gotten another pilot.

2:02 PM - In talking about the challenges of the show, the guys give props to their writing staff and have them rise and take a well-deserved bow. Big applause from the fans in the crowd.

2:05 PM - Adam and Eddie agree that they were lucky in the casting process. "All these people you see on this stage are the characters... and they were from the get-go," says Adam. Eddie adds, "We were very lucky... everyone we went to said yes."

2:06 PM - Of Mr. Gold's great dialect, Robert Carlyle knew his own (very thick) Scottish accent "wasn't going to do it" for his character. He reveals he got the voice from his six-year old son. Asked if any of the cast is afraid doing scenes with him, Ginnifer answers that doing scenes with him is difficult because they love "Bobby" so much so it's difficult to truly be afraid of him.

2:08 PM - Matt asks about the fact that Giancarlo Esposito booked another pilot. Does that mean Sidney (a.k.a. Man in Mirror) may find a way out of Storybrooke? "A lot of actors will do other roles on other shows and it's scheduling," says Eddie, who is clearly not worried. He cites Nestor Carbonell on "Lost," who is an example of an actor who would come back when they needed him but did other things in the meantime.

2:09 PM - Will we start seeing what can truly undo the curse? "Perhaps we already have," says Eddie with a sneer. "Ooohs" and "Aahhhhs" from the crowd. "Take that!" he says, defiantly, mentioning the critics who have said the story isn't moving along fast enough.

2:10 PM - On whether Emma will finally, 100%, accept Henry's theory on Storybrooke, Jennifer Morrison says, "There hasn't been anything that can legitimately prove the ideas could ever be possible."

2:12 PM - "I can't breathe when I'm wearing them," says Lana of the Evil Queen's costumes that help her get into character... and she adds that they keep getting bigger, literally. "I don't remember my ass being this big!" she exclaims. Overall, she is loving it and admits, "I feel like I'm flying when I'm playing her." The relationship between Regina and Henry will also be explored more through the rest of season one, she teases.

2:15 PM - Matt asks Josh Dallas to give the crowd a Prince Charming smile and he does to much delight from the crowd. Yes, he truly is charming. There are more obstacles coming for David and Mary Margaret, he says and reminds everyone that the curse on Storybrooke is that nobody can have their happy ending.

2:16 Pm - Snow White was my favorite of all the Disney characters, says Ginnifer. Snow White using a sword in by page 10 in the pilot definitely helped her decide to take the gig.

2:18 PM - Archie (Raphael's Storybrooke character) is going to have some new patients - David for one... and Mr. Gold. "He has things to work through," says Josh of David's need to see Archie. We'll also see Jiminy Cricket again, too, says Raphael. "Jiminy Cricket will be leading an intervention... we just won't tell you who for," Eddie says. (Yes, the guys obviously love giving teases!)

2:20 PM - "Obviously, Mr. Gold is a can of worms... there's a lot going on there," explains Robert of why Gold will take a spot on Archie's couch. "He doesn't have anyone else to talk to," he says on why Mr. Gold ultimately goes to see the town shrink. Will we see more delicious Regina/Mr. Gold scenes since each character now knows the other is fully aware of what Storybrooke is and their real identities? "They will be speaking out in the open from here on," says Eddie. They will also be revealing what their true agendas are.

2:22 PM - What about the stranger, August (Eion Bailey, who was not present for the panel). "Before we get to the finale we'll be pretty clear who he is," says Eddie. Matt throws out a theory that he could be Henry grown up? Eddie jokes, "He's Henry from the future!" Adam does say that there are a lot of theories out there and someone's got it right. Will we ever meet Henry's father? Adam says, simply, "We haven't negated that."

2:24 PM - As the guys have teased before (during our recent interview with them) we will find out soon what Snow White did to the Evil Queen. "The complication is what is beautiful about it... it's not black and white," hints Ginnifer.

2:25 PM - Technical question time about the green stage used on the show. Steve says that it's something the actors had to get used to and if you've worked on the green stage all day you'll see orange when you go home that night since it's the opposite color to green. Overall, the green stage is key to the show's success. "It just allows us to do things that we'd otherwise be unable to do," says Steve.

2:26 PM - Of mastering the daily work on the green stage, Lana says, "I found that I quickly had to learn how to revert back to my childhood imagination." Adam commends the crew who work with the green stage. "We get to keep raising the bar on what we do," he says.

2:29 PM - As previously announced, Barbara Hershey is coming in as Regina's mother. While the characters have their challenges, Lana just wanted one thing - "Can we have just one 'Beaches' moment?" she says of Hershey's famous tearjerker film. "We're lucky to have her," Lana adds. "She's a blast."

2:30 PM - Matt notes the "Little Mermaid" reference made recently on the show. Could we see the story of Ariel play out soon? "We would love to tell the story of 'The Little Mermaid' and Ariel [but] it's more of a season two thing.' Eddie says. Adam adds that they want to focus on the characters at hand first. Lana would like to turn into Ursula (the "Little Mermaid" sea witch) at one point.

2:31 PM - "It's cold and wet," says Jennifer of how Vancouver has been treating the cast. Eddie gives props to the crew for working so late in a forest and braving the Canadian weather conditions. Sometimes when they shoot during rainy/windy conditions they think the scene will be a wash but they often end up to being the best scenes. "I'm just glad I get to be in leather," says Josh of shooting often in cold temperatures.

2:33 PM - Fan favorite Jamie Dornan may have had his heart ripped out in Storybrooke but he's very much alive in the fairy tale land, teases Eddie about possibly seeing him again on the show.

2:36 PM - Matt asks about Robert's nail polish when he's playing Rumpelstiltskin's, but the actor has no idea. "The nails come pre-made," he says. Eddie jokes, "I believe it's called 'Broken Soul.'" Robert does say the Rumpelstiltskin makeup takes about two hours to put on and then another hour to take off. His elaborate boots take 20 minutes to lace up!

2:38 PM - Who else on the show would the actors like to play? Jennifer says Prince Charming. Josh nods and smiles. "They go fight things and swing swords and ride horses," she adds as to her reason. Josh says Jack of "Jack and the Beanstalk" fame but is reminded he needs to pick someone else on the show. He says, "Rumpelstiltskin." Ginnfer wants to play Henry. Raphael would pick the Evil Queen. Could there ever be a musical episode? Eddie says he knows his cast has wonderful singing voices. (We'll take that as a maybe.)

2:38 PM - Time for questions from the audience. What did the cast initially think about the show and playing two roles? "I think it's a pleasure and it's rare you get to do that in television," says Josh. He adds there's nothing else like this on TV.

2:42 PM - "We were never interested in retelling them," says Eddie of the classic stories and the show's take on them. Adam adds, "This show is not going to be about the stories you've seen but where they could go."

2:45 PM - A British fan thanks Josh for getting her 12-year-old to move on from Justin Bieber. Big laugh from Josh as well as the panel and the crowd.

2:50 PM - Will we see more of the Evil Queen's foe, Maleficent (from "Sleeping Beauty" and played by "True Blood" actress Kristin Bauer van Straten)? Adam will only say, "I think it would be disappointing if we never saw her again."

2:51 PM - "I have Sunday night rituals," says Lana of watching the episodes with friends and family. "I'm a fan of the show," she proudly states.

2:53 PM - "I would say the last scene with Sheriff Graham," says Jennifer of one of her favorite scenes so far in the series. "Not only was I kissing one of the hottest men... but it was a huge turning point for Emma," she says since it was the first time Emma ever let herself fall in love.

2:55 PM - "I say go grab it," advises Eddie when a fan asks about going after their dream to work in television. Citing the philosophy of "Once Upon a Time," he adds, "If you don't have dreams, then what's the point?"

2:58 PM - That's a wrap for the "Once Upon a Time" panel. Brian will be at Monday night's "New Girl" panel so stay tuned!

And for more PaleyFest coverage - past and present - visit our Paley Center topic page.

  [march 2012]  


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