It’s been another big week for Once Upon a Time news. Entertainment Weekly broke the casting of Elizabeth Mitchell (Lost) as a “possibly malevolent” character with ties to Frozen sisters Anna (Elizabeth Lail) and Elsa (Georgina Haig). There’s no official word on who she’ll be playing, but as a nascent fan with almost no knowledge of the show, my first guess is Hans Christian Andersen’s Snow Queen. Or someone very much like her.
The character would be a reasonable addition to the Frozen milieu without meaningfully impacting any plans for a sequel. Similar powers could confuse Elsa’s role and intentions, giving Anna and Kristoff something to worry about. And she could easily provide an emotional and metaphorical foil for a controlled Elsa, a contrasting image of what she could have become.
Adam Horowitz tweeted the title of the first episode of the upcoming season; laying on some heavy symbolism and locking Frozen fans in.
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair…
I might be reading too much into it. Sometimes writers just like to make puns. On the other hand they’ve noted that misunderstanding and perception goes to the heart of the show and offered the weaselly “possibly malevolent,” to describe the mystery casting.
In honor of the ambiguous yet tantalizing tease, it’s only appropriate that the final bit involves Alan Tudyk, the Duke of Weselton himself, who spoke with The AV Club about developing the secondary antagonist of Frozen.
The great thing about voice-acting is it isn’t animated yet. And so once you find the role and you’re within the scene, if you come up with an idea, you can go with it very easily. It’s all in your head. They’ve set the scene, but you’re imagining it. A good example is in Frozen. I had these two big henchmen with me, but they didn’t tell me until halfway through. There’s a scene where I say, “Go find the princess. If you find her, you know what to do.” And they’re like, “Yeah, you have these two big henchmen.” I’m like “Oh, I do?” “Yeah, they’re always with you.” “Well, they don’t say anything.” They go “Oh, no. They’re just quiet, stoic.”
Tudyk is incredibly funny, and he took to his silent partners with gusto. He apparently had to dial it back a little, though:
…they’re like, “Your character can’t be too funny because we have to believe him to be the villain.” He’s the villain for a portion of the movie until the real villain reveals himself. And so if he’s too funny then it’s just confusing.