Andrew J. West has been tapped to join the cast of Once Upon a Time, EW has confirmed.
The Walking Dead alum — who costarred on OUAT bosses Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis’ Dead of Summer — will appear in the season 6 finale, with the potential for more should the ABC fairy tale drama be renewed for a seventh season.
Details on his role, of course, are being kept under wraps. But TVLine recently reported the show was looking to cast a leading man who once was optimistic but has since become a cynical recluse.
Here’s a theory: What if West is playing an older version of Henry (Jared Gilmore)? If something tragic were to happen in the finale that would cause Henry to lose hope, it would make sense that a future version of him would match that description.
For what it’s worth, when we asked Horowitz and Kitsis during The Hot Seat whether viewers would know the two new characters being cast in the finale, the latter answered with a potentially telling “can’t say.”
If true, the casting could explain why OUAT seems to be heading for a big shift. At the Television Critics Association’s press tour, ABC chief Channing Dungey expanded on her earlier comments about the future of Once, explaining that the OUAT bosses are viewing the potential seventh season as a springboard to take the show in a new direction.
Once Upon a Time airs Sundays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.