Dragon Con 2015: Kristin Bauer van Straten on Once Upon a Time Panels

OUAT Sunday Dragon Con 2015

It is that time of year again! Dragon Con 2015 came and went in a flurry of panels and people and really cool costumes. This is my fifth year attending the Atlanta based convention. I usually try to make time for at least one Once Upon a Time panel. This year however, I went to all three because it is the first time that there was not a True Blood panel to attend.

Kristin Bauer van Straten who plays Maleficent on Once Upon a Time and Pamela Swynford de Beaufort on True Blood decided to come to Dragon Con 2015 along with Merrin Dungey who plays Ursula and Victoria Smurfit who plays Cruella de Vil.  I have had the pleasure of seeing Kristin many times in the process of covering True Blood. But it wasn’t until this year that I realized that I will always hold a special place in my heart for the cast of True Blood.

In terms of the Once Upon a Time panel, the series at Dragon Con 2015 is the best I have been to at Dragon Con thus far. Audiences had their questions answered throughout each panel but we also got a window into what life must have been like on set when they weren’t shooting. The answer involves singing, feeling slightly silly, and of course laughter.

Speaking of singing, the audience convinced Kristin on Saturday to call leading lady Lana Parilla (The Evil Queen/Regina Mills) in order to secure permission to share a video of the four woman singing during a late night shoot. We hope Lana received the message because if she didn’t….getting a voicemail from a trio of actors and a bunch of fans at something called Dragon Con would be sort of awkward.

We also learned how each Queen of Darkness got the part. Victoria originally auditioned to play Belle’s (Emilie de Ravin) mom and was later offered the part of Cruella. I am fairly certain that Kristin and Merrin both received their respective roles on OUAT because they’re on a short list somewhere of women that can play a badass on screen very successfully. Kristin received the role prior to show’s premiere in 2011. And she revealed that accepting the part actually came down to a coin toss on her part because her team was actually debating whether to put her on an unproven show. Thankfully the coin came up on the side she chose. Merrin was offered the part from her Alias connections. (The creators knew JJ Abrams, creator of Alias). For those of you who have not watched Alias, Merrin played Francie, BFF to Jennifer Garner’s Sydney Bristow who meets an untimely end when another super spy named Allison Doren (also played Dungey) and takes over her life. Alias is available on Netflix and Amazon to stream now. Highly recommended!

The final video on Sunday contains a rendition of Happy Birthday for Kristin’s husband, musician Abri van Straten who happened to have a birthday that day.

Image/Video Credits: Shanea O’Connor Media

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