We are just a few days into the fall season (or autumn as my daughter likes to remind me) and let me say this…there is more to fall than pumpkin spice lattes! There’s football, cooler weather and the new fall television lineup! New shows coming on board and old favorites returning. And TONIGHT, the return of one that everyone is talking about! I’ve got the spoiler-free scoop on the ONCE UPON A TIME Season 6 premiere!
Disclaimer: Disney and ABC invited me to Los Angeles on an all-expenses paid trip, in exchange for my coverage of these events, which included Disney’s Queen of Katwe red carpet premiere and more. As always, all opinions are my own.
Season 6 begins TONIGHT: SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25 (8:00–9:00 p.m. EDT), on the ABC Television Network
So, where are my Storybrooke fans?
Not sure what Storybrooke is, but intrigued by it all? Join in as ONCE UPON A TIME is one show you can easily binge-watch and catch up – it’ll grab your interest immediately! Watch tonight and see! Love it and go back to the start with Season 1.
Last week I headed on over to Burbank, California to the ABC Building for a special sneak peek of the ONCE UPON A TIME Season 6 premiere. 25 of us enjoyed a continental breakfast, watched the entire first episode and then had a special interview!
We were able to sit down with the creators and executive producers of the show, Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz. You might recognize them from another huge hit, LOST! Oh, how I LOVED that show! Let’s just say these two are incredibly talented and that alone should have you sitting down to watch tonight. Because in Storybrooke, you never know what might happen…
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…
You guys know how much of a Disney fan I am, right? This show takes my favorite Disney characters (and other fairytale characters too) and morphs them into a drama in a way I could have never imagined. I told you these guys are geniuses!
For Season 6, this is what we can expect – “When Regina split herself in an attempt to eliminate her evil half, she unwittingly released the Evil Queen. Now the Evil Queen is back and ready to leave a trail of destruction in her wake. This season Emma learns a life-altering secret that could have serious consequences for her family and loved ones. Our heroes will be met with many surprises, including Aladdin a former Savior who may be able to offer Emma just the help she needs, Jafar, Princess Jasmine, the Count of Monte Cristo and Morpheus.”
“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 opening scene had me from the first few seconds as one watched a rider fly through the desert upon horseback. Where was he heading?
Watch the opening scene…
What to expect in this first episode – “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.”
This episode was full of surprising twists and turns, leaving the viewer wanting more (and we have to wait!!!). What happens to Emma and what it means to her future is at the forefront, but the biggest twist of all has to do with Belle and Rumple.
Interview with Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz (creators and executive producers)
I’ll be honest, when you get the chance to sit down with the men who actually are in the middle of filming season 6, you realize they know EVERYTHING. So you can imagine how difficult it was to restrain ourselves. There were a lot of questions asked about the future episodes. Specific questions. Some were answered. Some were not. But I was surprised at how forthcoming they were about characters, conflict, and even how they view the end of the series (which hopefully will not happen for quite a long time).
One thing that always intrigues their biggest fans is the new characters and storylines that will be introduced.
When asked, they divulged, “Captain Nemo, Count of Monte Cristo, Cinderella, Aladdin, Jasmine, Jafar”. Edward quickly added, “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 a lot more of Archie, this year, Jiminy Cricket”.
He added, “What 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 they could have been before, and who they could be next”.
One of my friends, Carol Jones from AllMommyWants.com was able to ask a great question. Carol said, “Where else do you find inspiration for the characters and their stories?”.
Edward remarked, “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 images stick in our mind. For us, you know, Rumple was always part rock star. He was kind of this mixture of Bowie and Mick Jagger and then he’s the Godfather. And you mix those two together. And so you’ve got Mick Jagger if he was a crime boss and that is kind of where we came this from, you know?”
He continuted, “When we sat down, we always said it’s fairytales through a Bowie video, and which is why you see all these little touches. But 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. And he’ll go another way, and if you notice, you find this really weird collaboration”.
On Social Media…
Another friend, Amanda from Guide4Moms, was curious about how social media might play a role in storylines or characters. This was something I knew you fans would want to hear!
Edward was so funny in his explanation. He said, “With the internet, you hear everything. So if we were to listen to everyone, Robin would be both dead, alive, Regina would be with Daniel, the Huntsmen would come back even though he’s a movie star. He would also be dead and Neil would be back. Hook would be alive and dead. And so everybody has a different opinion and we’re going to go with the one that got us to episode 115, which is ours.”
Edward then added, “And so as much as we love the fans and we love their thoughts, by the time they hear them, we’re already on episode 20. So today, this will premier and episode one will get a lot of ‘you betters’. But we’re in ten, and so the hardest thing I think in this business is to stay true to your vision, because every day you wake up and somebody is trying to say, are you sure you want to do that? Here’s what I do, you could do that and you have to kind of stay true to it and sometimes you really fail, and sometimes you really succeed, but at the end of the day and the show is over,
“I think the two of us want to look back and say, the idea we had in my apartment in 2002, we did what we wanted, and we left it on the field, and we can move forward knowing that we did what we wanted and not tried to please, you know, polls on Spoiler TV dot com.”
Adam commented, “Right. And we love to hear from the fans, and we love to get the feedback, and it’s a relatively new phenomena that we get those real time feedback as shows are airing. But what’s hard for a lot of fans to understand, because they don’t make television for a living, is exactly what Eddy said, which is by the time you’re watching the premier we’re already talking about the back half of the season, and how we’re ending the season and all of that. It’s like the ship has sailed, you know, in a way.”
Edward chimed in, “You’re trying to write a book and it’s like someone’s commenting on chapter three. Like did anyone read the Hunger Games and after chapter two go, they didn’t tell me who won. I hate this book. I have to read 80 more pages? But on TV it’s like, I watched three hours, and I want to know what’s happened to John Stow, right now.”
They are often inspired by the fans and at times that has found itself into the writing. Really? Yes!
Adam mentioned, “One of the things that is like when you see – how much people respond to things, or how upset they get when something doesn’t go the way they want it for a character. Sometimes we just want to shake them and say, just be patient, let’s see when we get there and other times it’s like, this is just the journey of the show and we’re glad that you feel that they’re so real, because that means that collectively us, the cast and the crew, are doing our jobs.”
Edward said, “There was a moment in New York Comic-Con where a fan told me a story about her life growing up and gave a button and we did that very scene in Heroes and Villains when a fan came up and said Regina gets a bad deal. And that was a shout out to one fan and one moment where they really inspired me.”
I wonder if that fan knows what she did!!
What an experience meeting these two creative minds! Now tune in tonight to see what I’m talking about (and a lot of what I couldn’t talk about)!
Season 6 begins TONIGHT: SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25 (8:00–9:00 p.m. EDT), on the ABC Television Network!
Be sure to read all about my experience walking the red carpet at Disney’s Queen of Katwe premiere and more: