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'Once Upon a Time' extended season four synopsis: 7 things we learned

The world of Once Upon a Time will soon come back to life—and with plenty of new faces in tow.

ABC has just released an extended synopsis of the show’s upcoming fourth season, which will introduce Frozen’s Elsa, Anna, and Kristoff, as well as Once Upon a Time in Wonderland’s Will Scarlet. (His reunion with Robin Hood should be interesting, since the two didn’t leave each other on the best of terms.)

What’s in store for the residents of Storybrooke? Here are the seven juiciest details we learned from the new logline:


ABC: Here's why 'Once Upon a Time in Wonderland' didn't work out


ABC Entertainment Group president Paul Lee has a theory about why Once Upon a Time in Wonderland didn’t work out. The network executive suggests the Once Upon a Time spin-off was undermined by its time slot. Originally, ABC planned to run the Alice in Wonderland-inspired fantasy series during Once‘s winter hiatus. It ultimately opted to air Wonderland Thursdays at 8 p.m. leading into Grey’s Anatomy instead—which has been a tough hour for the network in recent years, with several shows struggling to gain traction in the slot (particularly up against CBS’ top-rated The Big Bang Theory). This fall, ABC will execute its original plan by running fairy tale musical comedy Galavant in the OUAT “gap.”

“I would have given [Wonderland] a better chance had I done what we’re doing with Galavant and put it in the gap,” Lee told reporters at the Television Critics Association’s press tour in Beverly Hills on Tuesday. “We wanted to build a night of empowered women, and we were excited about the show, disappointed we didn’t bring an audience to it … I think we should have tried that one in the gap. I think we would have had a better chance with that.” READ FULL STORY

Michael Socha set to join 'Once Upon a Time' as series regular -- EXCLUSIVE


Wonderland fans, your wish is close to coming true: The Knave of Hearts is headed to Storybrooke. Actor Michael Socha is expected to join Once Upon a Time as a series regular next season.

This is not yet a done deal because Once Upon has not been officially renewed. While the Sunday fantasy drama is considered a lock by insiders to return, ABC hasn’t announced any of their 2014-15 pick-ups yet. When the order comes in, we’re told producers will exercise their option to bring aboard Socha, who charmed viewers on Once Upon‘s spin-off this season Once Upon a Time in Wonderland.   READ FULL STORY

'Once Upon a Time in Wonderland' canceled: Which land should ABC spin-off next?


The fairy tale’s over. Once Upon a Time in Wonderland is not coming back next season.

This is no surprise given its performance, but ABC confirmed the news Friday. The network actually told fans Thursday night that next week’s episode was the “series finale” instead of “season finale,” but interestingly the news is just really taking off now (when “only” 3.3 million watch a show, guess it takes a while for the news to spread).

The Once Upon a Time spin-off was conceived as a stand-alone one-season story, but the hope was a new tale in the same world could launch next season. All the episodes will have aired. The show struggled throughout its run at 8 p.m. on Thursday nights. The Sunday night flagship series Once Upon a Time, while not officially ordered for next season, is fully expected to continue.

UPDATE: And just because Wonderland has been canceled doesn’t mean Once Upon couldn’t spin-off again. So that’s our poll: Which Disney-owned land should Once Upon spin-off next? READ FULL STORY

'Once Upon a Time in Wonderland': Alice and the Knave of Hearts preview the premiere

The Wonderland of ABC’s new Once Upon a Time spinoff is a perilous place filled with fire-breathing dragonflies, gooey “mallow marsh” swamps, bloodthirsty CGI beasts, and at least one murderous, well-coiffed queen. (It wouldn’t be a Once spinoff without one of those.)

Luckily, the show’s grown-up Alice  doesn’t have to navigate these treacherous environs alone. When she returns to the fantasy land in tonight’s series premiere, she’s joined by a trusty sidekick: The Knave of Hearts, a witty rogue with a mysterious past. Together, they’ll fight the wicked forces of the Red Queen and Jafar — yes, that Jafar — as they search for Cyrus, a genie from Agrabah who happens to be Alice’s one true love.

Alice and the Knave — a.k.a. Will — make a great team. So do English-Australian actress Sophie Lowe and English actor Michael Socha, who respectively bring both characters to life. Seriously, just look at these two in action:


'Once Upon a Time in Wonderland' sneak preview: Alice kicks butt -- EXCLUSIVE


Want to check out a exclusive scene from the Once Upon a Time in Wonderland premiere that drew fan cheers at Comic-Con this summer?

The set-up: Alice (Sophie Lowe) is being held in an Victorian England insane asylum where the doctors are trying to convince her to have “a procedure” that will numb her heartache for her imagined long-lost love Cyrus (Peter Gadiot). Then she gets a message from the Knave of Hearts (Michael Socha) … and then this happens. Wonderland premieres this Thursday at 8 p.m. READ FULL STORY

'Once Upon' promo blunder: Snow White's magic crotch!

ABC scored an accidental social media bullseye during Once Upon a Time on Sunday night. A pop-up animated graphic for the show’s Wonderland spin-off featured the White Rabbit making a magic portal in exactly the wrong spot — or the right one. The moment came just after Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin) uttered the line: “You’re searching for something powerful enough to vanquish the queen.” Wonderland‘s White Rabbit, it seems, has a suggestion.

Here’s the gif, then see below for Once Upon showrunners giving their take on the promo.


'Once Upon a Time in Wonderland' casts Iggy Pop -- EXCLUSIVE

Iggy Pop in Wonderland? Fits! If you’re going down the psychedelic rabbit hole, you wouldn’t be too surprised to stumble across the punk rock godfather.

Iggy will play the voice of The Caterpillar in ABC’s Once Upon a Time in Wonderland.

“But wait!” you cry. Isn’t the hookah-smoking mushroom-perched insect voiced by another rock god — Roger Daltrey? He was when Once Upon a Time visited Wonderland. But we’re told Daltrey wasn’t available for the new series so the part was recast.

Other Wonderland character voices include John Lithgow as the White Rabbit and veteran actor Keith David, who was recently cast as the voice of the Cheshire Cat.

Wonderland premieres Thursday, Oct. 10. For the uninitiated:

'Once Upon' team talks Jafar: No parrot!

How will ABC’s Once Upon a Time in Wonderland‘s version of Jafar differ from Disney’s Aladdin version?

Showrunners Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz dropped some hints about how Naveen Andrews’ character will be integrated into the Once universe during their Television Critics Association press tour stop in Beverly Hills on Sunday.

“First off,  like any character we introduce, we approach it from [asking] how do we humanize [the character], what’s the way to make it real relatable and grounded, and then we find an awesome actor,” Horowitz says.

“We wrote this part for [Andrews],” Kitsis says. “We knew we wanted Jafar, we knew we wanted Naveen. Similar to what we do with Once Upon a Time, no villain is just born evil, they’re made evil. For us, that is the story of Jafar, the story of what is driving him to need this power. With Naveen, we know he can break your neck with legs — as we saw in Lost — but he can also make you cry.”

“It’s about two big things,” Horowitz adds. “What does he want? And how did he get the way he is in order to want that thing?” READ FULL STORY

At TCA, we want answers about 'Homeland,' 'American Horror Story: Coven,' 'Agents of SHIELD,' more

Summer is typically a pretty quiet time for TV fans, but July is full of television news, thanks to last weekend’s Comic-Con and today’s kickoff of the Television Critics Association Press Tour.

As entertainment reporters (including EW’s Inside TV team) settle in for two weeks of TCA presentations, we’re looking forward to the new and returning shows we didn’t catch up with down in San Diego, plus reminding you of all the great news we scooped up during our Comic-Con interviews. Stick with through Aug. 7 for everything you need to know about these shows and more:

'Once Upon A Time in Wonderland' cast talks costumes, fight scenes, and more

The cast of Once Upon A Time in Wonderland took a sojourn from Wonderland to the dreamland of Comic-Con over the weekend, dropping by EW’s digital studio for a chat with Sandra Gonzalez. The ABC show, premiering this fall, is a spin-off of Once Upon A Time, but this one takes place through the eyes of Alice, of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland fame. Cast members Sophie Lowe, Michael Socha, Peter Gadiot, Emma Rigby, and Naveen Andrews talked about those fantastical costumes, who can throw a punch, bringing fairytales to life, and more. Check out the interview below.

'Lost' in 'Wonderland'! Naveen Andrews joins 'Once Upon' spinoff in major role -- EXCLUSIVE


He’s back: Naveen Andrews is returning to ABC primetime. The actor has booked a major role on upcoming fall series Once Upon a Time in Wonderland.

Andrews will play Jafar — the main villain in Disney’s 1992 film Aladdin.

The role will mark Andrews’ U.S. TV return since playing Sayid on Lost, which concluded in 2010. He’s appeared in one other project, the UK series Sinbad, which was aired stateside on Syfy, and was cast in an ABC pilot earlier this year. The super-secret casting was just announced during the Wonderland panel, with Andrews surprising fans by taking the stage.

“I’m proud and thrilled to be back with ABC on an exciting and unique new show!” said Andrews in a statement to EW. “This role will be a real departure from any animated versions because of the layered emotions and complexities involved with making him a real three-dimensional character.”

Showrunner Edward Kitsis said on the panel that Jafar will part of the show starting with the season premiere. “We absolutely had this character in mind and we knew we wanted Naveen to play it. We asked him he said yes and we said lets save it for Comic-Con … it’s going to be very frightening.”

Wonderland premieres Thursday, Oct. 10 at 8 p.m.


'Once Upon a Time in Wonderland' getting more episodes -- EXCLUSIVE


Alice might want to pack an extra bag before going down the rabbit hole this fall.

ABC’s Once Upon a Time in Wonderland is going to be more than 13 episodes. In fact, it’s not really a limited series at all.

Here’s the scoop. Depending on what you’ve previously read, some of this may sound familiar and some will be new. The model that’s being formed behind the scenes for Wonderland is really unique and there’s been some understandable confusion out there as the plan has come together.

When Wonderland was announced as a limited series in May, it received 13 episodes — the standard order for a new drama. But ABC is about to add some additional episodes to that order (we can’t tell you how many, but the total is not 13 episodes and it’s not 22).

Now with a typical new series pickup, producers hope and pray their ratings in the fall are big enough to get an additional “back 9″ order so they end up with a full 22-epsiode season. But Wonderland creators Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis have a different vision for this show: a self-contained epic romance that’s planned in advance from start to finish — no filler! That means there will be no additional episodes ordered for the season beyond the first order, so the showrunners can break down the entire story before the first episode ever airs. That’s why there are more episodes being ordered now-ish, because the writers have figured out how many hours they need.

“We really want to tell the story without having to worry about how to stretch it for five years,” Kitsis tells EW. “The upfront order will be it for the season.” Horowitz adds, “This is not meant to be a 22-episode season. Whatever it ends up being, we’ll have told a complete story, with a beginning, middle and end.”


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