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Once Upon a Time (TV Series 2011–2018) Poster

(2011–2018)

Trivia

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Josh Dallas (Prince Charming) and Ginnifer Goodwin (Snow White) went on to marry in real life.
The role of Rumplestiltskin was written specifically for Robert Carlyle.
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During one of the episodes, Prince Charming mentions to Snow White about falling through a portal to Asgard, a reference to Marvel's Thor. Josh Dallas played Fandral in Thor (2011).
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Most of the objects in Mr. Golds were brought in by the cast.
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Names for many characters in Storybrooke are often coordinated with their fairy tale counterpart. For example:
  • Mary Margaret Blanchard (Snow White): Blanchard derives from the French word "blanc" or "blanche" for white. The name "Mary Margaret" is from a real-life woman believed to be the inspiration of the Snow White character named "Maria Sophia Margaretha Catharina Freifräulein Von Erthal" (born on June 15, 1729 in Germany).
  • Regina Mills (Evil Queen): Regina is a Late Latin and Modern Italian feminine noun and name meaning "queen". Regina's grandfather was a Miller so that is a connection to her last name.
  • David Nolan (Prince Charming): The masculine name David means "darling" or "beloved." In Biblical text, it is also the name of the shepherd who became King David after defeating the Goliath the giant. Nolan is a Gaelic name meaning "noble," "fighter," or "champion."
  • Mr. Gold (Rumpelstiltskin): Rumpelstiltskin spun straw into gold in his story.
  • Ruby (Red Riding Hood): A ruby is a pink to blood-red colored gemstone.
  • Ashley Boyd (Cinderella): Cinders precede ashes in the burning process. Also, Cinderella was originally called Ashputtel. Boyd derives from the Gaelic word "buidhe" meaning yellow-haired.
  • Sidney Glass (Mirror): Because another word for mirror is glass or looking glass. Also, his newspaper is called "The Mirror." Sidney's character as the Queen's minion trapped in a mirror parallels a genie trapped in a bottle/lamp as a master's servant. The name Sidney refers to Sidney Sheldon, the creator of I Dream of Jeannie (1965).
  • Archie Hopper (Jiminy Cricket): Crickets are sometimes called hoppers, because they hop to get around. "Archie" could also allude to the cockroach poet created in 1916 by Don Marquis.
  • Jefferson (The Mad Hatter): The group Jefferson Airplane has a song called "White Rabbit" which uses lyrics derived from the "Alice in Wonderland" tales.
  • Paige (Grace): In the real world, the Hatter's daughter is named Paige, but in the fairy tale land her name is Grace. Grace Slick was a member of Jefferson Airplane and writer of their song "White Rabbit."
  • Dr. Whale (Dr. Frankenstein): In his black and white fairy tale world, he is Dr. Victor Frankenstein. James Whale was the director of the original Universal Frankenstein (1931) and its sequel The Bride of Frankenstein (1935).
  • Cora (The Queen of Hearts): Derived from the Latin word "cor" meaning heart.
  • Zelena/Kelly West (The Wicked Witch): Zelena means "green" in various Slavic languages. Also, "keligreen" is a shade of green, and the Wicked Witch is associated with the West.
  • August W. Booth (Pinocchio): W. Booth references to Wayne C. Booth, who coined the term the "unreliable narrator" i.e. a blatant liar who misleads the audience. August's fairy tale counterpart is known for lying.
Of all of the Prince and Princess couples that could have been the focal point of the series, Snow White and Prince Charming were chosen, because of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) being the first movie Disney produced.
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The friendship between Snow White and Little Red Riding Hood is a nod to "Snow White and Rose Red", another German fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm.
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At the 2014 Oz Comic Con, Jennifer Morrison confirmed that one of her favorite scenes was when Hook quoted the infamous "as you wish" to Emma, saying that it was her own "Buttercup moment".
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The wardrobe that Emma was sent through when she's born is a nod to The Chronicles of Narnia; it is even made from a special tree from a magical universe.
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Once Upon a Time writer Jane Espenson revealed that a first name for Mr Gold has never been created
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Elizabeth Mitchell found it hard to wear high heels in the woods for her role as the Snow Queen, and suggested that she be bare-footed instead.
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There are multiple references to Walt Disney once being The Author. In season four, episode seventeen, "Best Laid Plans", August (Pinocchio) makes reference to there being many authors, including "a man named Walt", and in season four, episode twenty-two, "Operation Mongoose: Part 1", the episode starts in December 1966, with reference to The Author recently passing away, and a new author needed. Walt Disney died on December 15, 1966.
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The creators formally offered the part of the Blue Fairy, a.k.a. Mother Superior to singer Lady Gaga. However, according to Edward Kitsis, they never heard back from her management staff. The part then went to Keegan Connor Tracy.
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Captain Hook's ship is the replica of the eighteenth century ship Lady Washington, based in Grays Harbor, Washington. Lady Washington has appeared in various films, portraying the H.M.S. Interceptor in Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003), and the brig Enterprise, a namesake of the Starship Enterprise, on the holodeck in Star Trek: Generations (1994). She provided the basis for the R.L.S. Legacy in Disney's Treasure Planet (2002).
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Because Jared Gilmore (Henry Mills) is a minor, he is only allowed to work ten hours a day. Due to that, they have stand-ins when he is unavailable, and off-camera, have people speaking his lines. When performing one of the scenes, one of the actors thought the stand-in was actually Jared, and when he found out it wasn't, broke out laughing, because it was actually a twenty-year-old woman.
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There is a Mickey Mouse phone, in the case, at Mr. Gold's shop.
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Prince Charming was originally supposed to die in the pilot episode but the writers decided it would be difficult to continue the show without him
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In the song "Do You Want to Build a Snowman?" from Disney's Frozen (2013), Anna makes friends with the portraits to ease the loneliness. In one line, she talks to a portrait and says, "Hang in there Joan." In this show, Joan is the alias she uses with Charming, a.k.a. David.
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Kristin Bauer van Straten briefly appeared in season one, but she was unable to return, due to her role in True Blood (2008). However, once True Blood concluded its run in 2014, she returned in season four.
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Originally, there was a plan to bring back Jamie Dornan for the finale of the third season. However, due to scheduling conflicts, the plan was scrapped.
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Katee Sackhoff auditioned five times for the role of Emma Swan.
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Emma Swan's first name was originally going to be "Anna".
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Jamie Dornan who played Huntsman\Graham was originally supposed to play Sherlock Holmes, however the show could not get the rights
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Most of the storybook's characters, especially Queen Regina, are wearing Indian jewelry. Princes' and Kings' attires are Indian as well.
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Snow White's name in Storybrooke is Mary Margaret. In the enchanted forest, Snow told Ruby, a.k.a. Red, her favorite names were Mary and Margaret.
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Paula Marshall was cast as Maleficent, but was replaced by Kristin Bauer van Straten after producers decided to go in a different direction with the character.
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When Robin Hood is looking through the Wizard of Oak's, a.k.a. Oz's drawers in New York City, you see a Mickey Mouse shaped object in one of them, next to some scissors.
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In a rare instance, the Google Street View van was traveling through New Westminster, Canada while primary filming was under way for Season 7. On Google Street View (link in the External Sites section on the Once Upon a Time: Hyperion Heights (2017) page here on IMDb) there is ample evidence of the location at 704 Clarkson Street dressed as Roni's Bar and the location at 40 Begbie Street dressed as the police station.
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Rock superstar Roger Daltrey had a very quick cameo as the Caterpillar in season one, episode seventeen, "Hat Trick". However, in Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (2013), the Caterpillar is voiced by Iggy Pop, but there are multiple Cinderellas, Rapunzels, and Alices, so there may also be multiple Caterpillars.
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First season, episode 5, Henry drops an Apollo candy bar at the mouth of the mineshaft. Those are the same fictitious candy bars used on ABC's Lost.
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Michael Socha reprises his role as Will Scarlet in the spin-off series Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (2013).
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Each opening title sequence contains a clue to one of the main themes in that episode, and is often color coordinated for that theme.
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Steveston, Richmond, British Columbia (which doubles as Storybrooke) was also the setting for an episode of The X-Files (1993). The popular Granny's Diner is first spotted behind Mulder and Scully at 9:32 in the episode Gender Bender (1994). In that episode, Granny's is Cannery Cafe which is the actual name of the establishment.
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In the original script Mary Margaret was both a nun and a school teacher
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Neal Cassidy gets his name from the Beat generation's Neal Cassady, the friend and mentor of writer Jack Kerouac. The aloofness and independence of his character (as well as the run-ins with the law) is based on the real-life Cassady. He spent his teen years in and out of jail, due to numerous arrests for grand theft auto and petty crime. He served eleven months in prison for sale of stolen goods, the same prison sentence that Emma spends. Cassady also knocked up his second wife and abandoned her to raise their child alone, much like the character of Neal.
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Jorge Garcia (Anton the Giant), Emilie de Ravin (Belle), Elizabeth Mitchell (The Snow Queen), Rebecca Mader (Zelena), Lana Parrilla (Regina Mills), Faran Tahir (Captain Nemo), and Naveen Andrews (Jafar in the spin-off series Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (2013)) co-star in Lost (2004).
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The series is very similar to the 1984 film The Never Ending Story. A young boy begins reading a book and is drawn into a fantasy world and soon discovers it is more than it appears to be.
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Anna Cathcart, who plays Tween Drizella, also plays Drizella's daughter in Descendants 2 (2017)
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Ali Skovbye (Paige/Grace) and Tiera Skovbye (Robin II) are sisters.
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Although it is never stated in the series, the character 'The Dragon' could be Mushu.
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Coincidentally, Jennifer Morrison's real-life father is named David.
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Frozen II (2019), which was released after this show's conclusion, also has an Enchanted Forest, albeit a very different one.
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Mulan is the only recurring character to not have a full half-season story arc or a love interest throughout the entire series, although in one scene Aurora suggests that she likes Phillip.
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Ethan Embry, Sonequa Martin-Green, Michael Raymond-James, and Andrew J. West have all appeared in The Walking Dead, Ethan & Sonequa sharing season 6 episode 1 together.
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Olaf is the only character from Frozen (2013) not to appear or get a mention in the Frozen arc.
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The name of the town that this takes place in, Storybrooke, is a contraction of the words 'story book'
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

The storyline of Snow White and Prince Charming's second baby was written to accommodate Ginnifer Goodwin's real-life pregnancy.
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Lana Parrilla specifically requested for the writers to change the abusive relationship between Regina and Henry. She is also responsible for the introduction of Regina's season three love interest, Robin Hood.
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Singer Christina Perri dedicated her song "The Words" to the show's main couple, Emma Swan and Captain Hook. Colin O'Donoghue (Captain Hook) is in the song's music video.
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Though Robbie Kay is the youngest actor to portray a major villain in this show, his character is the oldest villain in the series as of 2015.
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When Emma and Captain Hook are in the Enchanted Forest, Emma changes her clothes to period appropriate clothes. The clasps on her cloak are in the shape of Mickey Mouse.
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In one of the season four episodes, when Ingrid and her sisters are talking to Rumpelstiltskin, Thor's hammer Mjölnir can be seen behind the three sisters. It can also be seen in a previous episode, where Neal is searching for a portal to get to Neverland in Rumplestiltskin's palace.
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Yvette Nicole Brown played Ursula in season three, but the role was re-cast to get Merrin Dungey for season four. However, later in the show, it was hinted that there are two Ursulas: Ursula, the Sea-Witch, and Ursula, the Sea-Goddess, the latter being voiced by Yvette Nicole Brown, and the Sea-Witch being played by Merrin Dungey.
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Due to her starring role on the short-lived television series Intelligency, Meghan Ory was absent from several episodes of season two, and was subsequently demoted to recurring status.
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The farmhouse where Mr. Gold is held captive by the Wicked Witch of the West in season three is the same farmhouse where DG resides in the miniseries Tin Man (2007).
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Mr.Gold has not been given a first name. He is often referred to as Mr.Gold, Gold, Rumple, or Rumplestiltskin.
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In season four, Captain Hook received a change of clothes, which began on the first date he had with Emma Swan.
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In season two, when Belle gets pushed over the town line, she is entered into the hospital. Her scrubs in the hospital are yellow, a nod to her yellow dress in the animated version of Beauty and the Beast (1991).
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The following characters share a curse-breaking True Love's Kiss: Snow/Mary Margaret and Charming/David, Belle and Rumplestiltskin (incomplete; the curse starts to break, but doesn't finish), Emma and Henry, Aurora and Philip, Regina and Henry, Brennan Jones and an unnamed woman, Zelena and Hades, Ruby and Dorothy, Aladdin and Jasmine. Also, while Emma and Hook never share an official True Love's Kiss, they are confirmed as true love in season five, episode twenty, "Firebird", after passing the test in the Underworld, while trying to recover Ambrosia.
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There have been three versions of Operation Cobra throughout the series. The first is the original "Operation Cobra", which was meant to break the first curse in season one. The second version is "Operation Cobra Rescue", which was meant to rescue Henry from Peter Pan in season three. The most recent version was in season five, "Operation Cobra Part 2", which was meant to bring back everyone's memories from Camelot.
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Giancarlo Esposito was only able to make a limited number of appearances in seasons 2 and 3 due to working on Revolution (2012).
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When Hook is looking for Emma in New York City, he pays a visit to her apartment. He is sitting at the table with a poster behind him showing visible lettering as "Rackham", which belongs to both the surname of a famous pirate, as well as the British illustrator of many fairy tales.
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The Dark Curse is cast a total of five times throughout the series: once by Regina (who sacrificed her father), once by Peter Pan (who sacrificed Felix, his right-hand man), once by Snow White (who sacrificed David, although he was resurrected shortly thereafter), once by Hook as dark one in Camelot, sacrificing Merlin (as Nimue, the first dark one), and finally by Regina, who is tricked by Ivy into using her own blood, as she has already killed the one she loved most.
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Before the curse is broken in the first season, several characters mention leaving town to start a new life in Boston. That is a nod to where Henry finds Emma, at her apartment in Boston.
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Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz offered the role of Isaac, a.k.a. The Author, directly to Patrick Fischler.
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Greg Mendell mentioned to Regina that he was from Carlisle, Pennsylvania, a nod to Robert Carlyle, who plays Rumple.
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Clancy brown is the voice of the giant in season 2
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See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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