Hoping for answers about your favorite secondary characters before Once Upon a Time‘s sixth season ends? Well, you’ll have to wait a bit longer.
EW can reveal that there were very early plans to do a vignette-style episode that would have provided an update, or even some closure, on secondary characters whose stories haven’t been touched upon in a while.
Rumor has it, the idea was to open on Henry (Jared Gilmore) and a storybook as he recounted tales about Maleficent (Kristin Bauer van Straten) and Lily (Agnes Bruckner), Will (Michael Socha) and Anastasia (Emma Rigby), and others. Alas, the hour didn’t make it into the lineup this year.
“We mulled it, and we hope someday we get to it,” executive producer Edward Kitsis tells EW.
Executive producer Adam Horowitz explains that the problem with dedicating an entire hour to these secondary characters is that it takes away from the main storyline. “It ultimately comes down to: Where do you want to spend your time?” Horowitz says. “There’s so much we want to explore with our core characters. While we would love to tell you what’s going on with Kathryn [Anastasia Griffith] or the Red Queen, if we can find ways to slip in bits of it, or to tell you what’s going on with Lily, we’ll do it, but to give over a whole episode to it — as much as we love the idea on a conceptual level — it’s such precious real estate. Not that we don’t love the minor characters, but we have to honor our main cast.”
Horowitz adds: “If we were doing 22 episodes and you were bringing all of them, you could almost get away with it more, because you could get right on to the next one, but if you have to wait a couple of weeks to get back to the main plot of what’s going on, it’s a tough balancing act. It’s just hard.”
“The truth is we’re not going to get to it this year,” Kitsis confirms. That said, the vignette episode could still happen in the future. While the show has not yet been renewed for a seventh season, EW hears it’s a near-lock to return — though probably not without a big shake-up in Storybrooke.
Once Upon a Time airs Sundays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.