It’s a tale as old time. A magical cast takes over a Dragon Con panel Saturday at the Hilton Grand Salon, and the audience becomes entranced with their stories of murder, trying times, humorous moments, and stolen goods. Such was the case with the cast members of Once Upon a Time.
Fans kicked off the morning with a dark start when one young attendee asked Lana Parrilla if ripping out the hearts of her enemies made the Evil Queen happy. With a smirk that’d make Regina Mills proud, Parrilla answered, “I don’t know. Come up here and find out… Yes.”
It wasn’t all fun and ripping out hearts, though. Another fan asked the panel which scene was the most difficult to shoot, either emotionally or physically. For Jared Gilmore, the most taxing scenes were the ones with heavy stunts. He also had a hard time when he had to be mean to second mom Parrilla because “getting mad at your mom isn’t okay.”
For Rebecca Mader, the scenes when there was nothing on set to interact with were the hardest. One scene, where she’s in Oz with the Wizard of Oz, she had to make her character fall down, talk to monkeys, and look at Toto and Dorothy. Basically, it was just her and Toto physically in the scene. Spoiler: the monkeys and the wizard weren’t real. So, there she is, flailing around, flopping on the ground, and asking about when lunch is, but there’s nothing there. After Mader watched the edited scene, she thought that she’s a really good actress. “It looks really real. It’s amazing what they can do in post.”
Parrilla portrayed a plethora of characters in Once Upon a Time, but one gave her problems. As Ursula, from her torso up she was the purple sea witch, but from her torso down, she was covered in green for Ursula’s tentacles to be added in post-production. She could only move the top parts of her body, and a crew member operated a seesaw-like contraption that she was on that moved her up and down to simulate floating in the ocean.
Going straight for the funny bone, one audience member asked what were the funniest moments the actors had from other sets, and wardrobe malfunctions ensued. On the set of Scorpion King 2, Karen David was filming a scene in the desert wearing a leather costume, including a leather corset that took a bit of time to get into. It was very hot, and she was unaware when the corset unlaced itself and slipped south. In Swingtown, the costumes were all vintage and from the ’70s. Parrilla had a scene where her bikini-clad character dives into a pool, swims across it, and emerges at the other end. Once she dove in, it quickly became evident that the elastic was also from the ’70s and a full moon resulted.
Even our favorite fairy-tale characters are not above a little thievery. When asked what they kept from set, Mader coughed in a way that sounded surprisingly like “my broomstick.” Gilmore may or may not be in possession of a magic bean. Parrilla might have a heart box. Possibly 14. While we thought Aladdin was a thief, it was David who may now be the proud owner of a genie lamp.
[Note: The Daily Dragon and Dragon Con do not condone any illegal set behaviors. However, we’re not above sharing said information with the public for a laugh.]
While it’s been a year since Once Upon a Time aired its final episode, the love for the show hasn’t been lost. Fans lined up hours before the panel and missed the parade to welcome Jared Gilmore, Lana Parrilla, and Karen David to their first Dragon Con.