Jorge Garcia: Once Upon a Time's Angry Giant Is 'Almost Cartoonishly Unlike Hurley'

Once Upon a TimeIn the four months since his name started being bandied about as the next Lost alum to visit ABC’s Once Upon a Time, Jorge Garcia could only imagine who he’d be playing.

“I’d be hanging out with friends and we’d throw out ideas like, ‘The Pied Piper!’ Then ‘Captain Hook! Oh, they found one,’ he relates. “But [Once creators Adam Horowitz and Eddy Kitsis] are good idea men, so I wasn’t worried. When they finally pitched the role to me, it seemed like an inspired way to bring me on the show.”

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In the end, Horowitz and Kitsis — Lost vets themselves — cast Garcia as the burly giant residing at the top of the towering beanstalk that Captain Hook has led Emma and Snow to, in the name of procuring an enchanted compass needed to navigate any portal back to Storybrooke.

Emma and Hook, however, aren’t nearly as nimble as the fabled Jack, in their quest to pinch the compass. “On a scale of 1 to 10, they’re like at a 1, for sure. They’re not very stealthy at all,” Garcia previews. And that’s quite the liability when invading the lair of a not-at-all-gentle giant who looms about six times as tall as his trespassers.

“He’s mad…. Almost cartoonishly unlike [Lost's] Hurley,” Garcia shares. “In fact, when I did my looping session it was almost 100-percent grunts and growls. He doesn’t take kindly to intruders!”

Why is this giant not jolly? “They gave me the gist of an origin story, and a seed for that comes out during the episode. But that might be a story to tell for a later date,” says Garcia, who’s already due back for at least one encore.

As seen in the photo above, Garcia filmed his scenes exclusively on Once Upon a Time‘s famous “green stage,” where ornate sets and backgrounds are digitally added in post production. The actor says it was “definitely a learning experience,” though he got a lot of help from his scene partners. For example, to establish a proper eyeline in one scene, “Jennifer Morrison was essentially just laying on the ground so that he face was next to the camera for me,” he says. “Everyone was supportive.”

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For the Losties out there looking for a nod pegged to Garcia’s visit, he vaguely recalls reading something in this week’s script — from a scene he himself is not in — “Where I was going, ‘Oh look at that wink,'” though he could not offer details. So keep your eyes and ears open!

In his time since bidding that ABC drama adieu, Garcia has guested on shows such as Fringe and Mr. Sunshine as well as co-headlined Fox’s Alcatraz (a show he says was “still forming itself” at the end of its first and only season. “It’s a shame we didn’t get to fully explore its potential.”) All told, he describes his recent run of roles as “fun,” but appreciates that they kept him busy but never “too busy.”

After six years of Lost, a brief break and then a season of Alcatraz, “This is the first time I’ve been in my house for an extended period of time,” he shares, “so I’ve been able to do stuff like install solar panels, things you can only do being home.”

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36 Comments
  1. Alienate says:

    After watching the last few episodes, I realized I have lost all interest in this show. Season two is a mess. Too many characters that we care little about. Too many plot arcs that give each character 2 lines per episode. I just don’t CARE anymore. I’m deleting my auto-record setting for the show as soon as I post this….

    • lauren says:

      Wow, I guess we are all supposed to be impressed by your bold stance and do same? PASS.

      • Alienate says:

        Uhhhh, Noooooo, I really don’t care what YOU do. I thought that maybe someone from ONCE might actually read these articles and get some feedback about their show.

        • Alex says:

          LMAO. Like TPTB would read this board, care about YOUR opinion above all else, and tailor the show to YOUR wishes. How conceited of you!

          • Eye says:

            Some people involved probably look on the internet at sites like this to get feedback BUT at the same time, unless Alienate has a nielson box and is part of ratings estimations, their threat to quit watching is irrelevant

      • Alice says:

        Oh come on, she’s just expressing her opinion. Do you really have to attack her so harshly and give us fans a bad name?

    • Tess says:

      Oh, well. See ya, bye. Maybe Jorge will install a home gym now that the solar panels are up.

    • Jerm says:

      I think it’s still great, actually. They’ve had a couple episode that made not much sense to the story, but I’m pretty sure the season is still awesome. I love OUAT. Always will.

      • Andrew says:

        The episode dealing with Dr. Whale’s reveal was disappointing for me. Sebastian Stan was so over the top in all of his scenes, and any chemistry Lana Parilla had with the actor who reprised his role as Daniel was missing this time. Now that we know who Whale is, his character just seems like it doesn’t fit with the rest that have been introduced.

        I’m still willing to watch, but I hope they find their groove as the season goes on.

        • lily says:

          I agree the Whale episode was boring, I barely watched the whole thing. However, I really like any of the Snow and Emma in fairytale land episodes, wish it would stop switching back and forth and include them in every episode.

    • sara says:

      The three simultaneous plots are terrible.

    • Mark says:

      Wow I have the complete opposite feeling. Season 2 has made me love the show more than I did in season 1. I think it’s that much more exciting. I love all the characters. I just think it’s totally BA.

    • Mike says:

      Am I the only one that thinks Season 2 is miles better than season 1, I for one believe Season 1 was a mess, it was good but there were a few troubling problems, the whole affair storyline, the murder investigation, Dreamy( why??). I personally believe that I’ve enjoyed every episode of season 2, with maybe the exception of last weeks episode. While there may be too much focus on some of the new character, I think it would be a mistake to give up on it rigt now, especially since this weeks episode is Emma centric and next weeks is red centric. I like that the creators took a risk and it is not just the same as season 1, I personally believe it is better.

    • aciel says:

      its ur opinion but who would give up on ouat all of the characters need to have their backstories told and its just this way because emma and snow r stuck in another world ur missing out on a lot of awosome episodes this season

  2. OMG says:

    I guess it is always the same issue when sophomore seasons come. The writers have to change up or people will lose interest, but they come back different and not everyone is going to like it. I for one am going to watch this show to the end I believe, because it is really quite spectacular no matter how you put it, compared to many broadcast shows up there. It is like a mini-movie experience every one hour. It is okay if I do not get the whole of it, it is a fun ride.

    But then again, I used to say I will watch Glee to the end, so anything can change. But I am quite positive that I will watch OUAT to the end.

    • Alienate says:

      Thank you. A well reasoned response. I never thought I’d give up on Fringe. But I did.
      The one show I’ll say I’ll never give up on: Homeland

      • ben says:

        I am surprised that you gave up on OUAT, but if you gave up on Fringe too, then I can see you are the kind of person that has difficulty maybe when a show goes in a different direction from what it has done on the past and feels a little like a different show? Rather than it being a function of the quality, per se.
        .
        I don’t think either of these shows have ever seen a noticable drop in quality. I give up on very few shows – even bad times sometimes keep me hooked and I just accept they are bad. The only shows which I can think of which Lost me were Glee on the back straight of Season 1, and Heroes in Season 3, and in both cases it was because I felt like characters were making decisions they would not make, that they didn’t hold true to the values and lessons learned of those characters. And as a result, it left the plot of both a mess.
        .
        I am not really seeing that with OUAT. Guess I’m just not seeing what you are seeing. I agree with OMG, in that I don’t think OUAT is a show I’m likely to give up on based on what has been created so far. But I might have said that about Heroes after season 1.
        .
        Ironically, Homeland is a show I could see people giving up on if the tension is not able to be retained. We have now lost the initial reason for tension, and I wouldn’t be surprised if by the end of season 2 there are some who feel ‘its just not the same any more’. What would be perfect for that show is to do what Lost did, and set an end season in stone now.

      • Mike says:

        You have up on Fringe!!! No wonder you’re giving up OUAT, you must just have an issue understanding high concept shows.

        • Alienate says:

          Yup, I had a hard time keeping track of who was Mork, and who was Mindy.

          • aciel says:

            ok its your opinion but the episodes r just this way because emma and mary r stuck in another world when they get back the episodes r going to be awsome u r going to miss on a lot of awsome episodes this season

    • maxisatroll123 says:

      i agree it is the same issue because people get used to the plot in season 1 but once the writers run out of ideas in season 1 but once they run out of ideas they come up with a different storyline and not everyone is going to like because people r used to the old storyline that made like this show in the first place but hey the writers got to change the storyline to get people to keep watching otherwise viewers will loose interest

  3. OnceFan says:

    Isn`t it the episode about Emmas backstory and the BIG reveal about Henrys father??? The return of the mysterious man from the premier? Why doesn`t “TVline promote this.. isn`t it more interesting? and why this week no sneek peeks? …pretty,pretty odd

    However thanks for the snippets of the Jorge Garcia interviews, This Giant will be fun to watch, love him :D

  4. Gilda says:

    I’m surprised that so many people don’t like this season as much. I actually think its better? It is a little disjointed and busy with characters, but it means they’re cutting down on the complete filler episodes like Cinderella and Hansel and Gretel that have no relivance to the people we care about. But to each his own; I’m excited to see Jorge, love him!

    • Mike says:

      Agree 100%, I don’t know why anyone would want more pointless stories, while most episodes this season have relevance to an overall arc.

    • Cam says:

      I actually liked the Hansel & Gretel episode; the Cinderella episode not so much but I liked the actress they cast for her.

      Personally, the only faults in this season for me so far are; Aurora (They really dropped the ball on this character) Dr. Frankenstein, and Emma’s lack of common sense. Other than that, it’s been pretty decent so far, very excited to see Jorge, hopefully we see him in more episodes! :)

  5. Vanessa says:

    I’m not finding the multiple arcs hard to follow at all. It’s a complex web they’re weaving, but so far they’ve been making it all work. These guys know what they’re doing. The show was amazing last season, and this season is even more epic. There’s a lot going on, yes, but it makes sense there’s a lot going on. They’ve opened up WORLDS of story book lands. I hate my favs getting less time right now, but they only have the time they got, they have to limit some screen time. I miss Emma when she’s not on as much, but at least they gave us a glimpse of what’s going on with her while they keep the bulk of the focus on the mainstory, and use the Emma snippets to set us up for the next. And if ANYONE has any reason to complain about characters not having enough time it’s us #WoodenSwan -ers! We’ve BARELY got any August. lol I have things I wish for the show, and I’ll tweet @ Adam H. things I wish to see, but all in all it’s their creation, and I have faith that they’ll take the show in a direction we’ll ultimately be happy with :) I’m loving it so much right now, and can’t wait to see what else they have in store for us.

  6. There are a few things about this season I don’t love (Mulan and Aurora for one), but that was true with the first season. It had it’s ups and downs (like most shows), but I think it’s a big picture type show. I don’t feel like I can fairly judge the season until the end of the season.

    However we are 5 episodes in and if you haven’t enjoyed any of them, then don’t waste your time. Plenty of shows out there to watch.

    • Templar says:

      Maybe, it’s just me, but I’m getting the feeling that K&H are zigging when they should zag. In the same way that David E. Kelly starts out with a terrific show and then falls off of a cliff [Ally McBeal etc.]. I’m fine with the Fairytale flashbacks, but I think the 3 story lines [then there, now here and now there] is tiring and tedious. I can follow it with no problem, but it feels as though Storybrooke is the least of it now. And Mulan, Aurora and the Frankenstein business is clutter.

      • LALA says:

        That’s interesting, and I do agree about Mulan et al. being clutter. Last year, I preferred the Fairytale flashbacks to the repetition of the writing in Storybrooke. This year, I would rank it Fairytale flashbacks>Storybrooke>Fairytale present.

  7. Templar says:

    I’m beyond disappointed. For me things just took a very mundane turn.

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