Comic-Con 2011: 'Once Upon a Time' EPs: 'You Go From Writer to Fan Immediately'

Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis share memories of "Lost" panels, "Tron: Legacy" and their hopes for their freshman ABC drama.
Jack Rowand/ABC
"Once Upon a Time"

With hundreds of thousands of people attending San Diego Comic-Con every year and the July 20-24 event kicking off this week, The Hollywood Reporter chatted with the big names in television to discuss their favorite memories and tips for attending the annual event. THR’s Live Feed will talk Comic-Con with actors, writers and producers in the days leading up to the event so check back soon for interviews and the latest news on panels and screenings.

Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis
Geek Cred:
Tron: Legacy, Lost, Birds of Prey
Upcoming:ABC’s Once Upon a Time
Comic-Con panel: Saturday, 3:15-4:15, Room 6DE

THR: What stands out from your first Comic-Con?
Edward Kitsis
: I feel like we were longtime listeners, first-time callers. Our first time was four years ago when we went down for Tron. I got lost on the floor and accidentally bumped into a table and there was Lou Ferrigno signing autographs and waiting for people to come up. I thought, “I’m definitely at Comic-Con.”

THR: What’s the best thing a fan has said to you at Comic-Con?
I remember the Comic-Con before the final season of Lost. The night before the panel we were walking around Hall H and saw all the people camped out for it. It was mind-boggling because it was really putting a human face on the people who watched the show, who care about it that passionately. That’s the thing that you get nowhere else but at Comic-Con.

Kitsis: I remember being at the Alice in Wonderland panel and Robert Zemeckis did something for A Christmas Carol, and then Tim Burton came out. You go from being writer to fan immediately. That’s what I love about Comic-Con.

THR: What panel would you stand in line all day for?
Anything Star Wars related. I would be there just to soak up any of that.

Horowitz: I would definitely camp out for anything Tim Burton did.

THR: If you could create your dream panel, who would be on it?
Kitsis: Steven Spielberg, Robert Zemeckis, George Lucas, Alfred Hitchcock, Billy Wilder
and Woody Allen. And Rob Sterling. If he would show up, that would be phenomenal.

Horowitz: I would love to go to a panel for the original Star Trek. Just all those writers that really started off that kind of storytelling on television in a big way.

Comic-Con 2011: Full THR Coverage

THR: What questions do you recommend fans not ask during panels?
“Why aren’t you better?” would be one. I don’t think there are any dumb questions and as long as they’re not personally attacking us. That’s the game, we write things and we put it out there in the entertainment world, and people get to judge whether or not they like it. Since we’re doing that, the viewer has the freedom to like it or hate it.

THR: What makes for a successful panel?
If you can surprise the audience and show them something they didn’t know they were going to get, that’s the greatest thing; something they didn’t know would be there.

Kitsis: The thought of Comic-Con is that you’re given a list of things that you know you can see, but you know somewhere in there is that is a little mystery prize in the Cracker-Jack that you’re not sure what it is.

Kitsis:So far, our favorite place has been Flynn’s Arcade, but I don’t think it’ll be there this year. (Laughs.)

THR: What tips do you have for Comic-Con first-timers?
Bring a lanyard. The first time we went, we didn’t have one and they were all out. I had to carry the pass around, and I lose things rather easily. Stay hydrated and have a great opening line.

THR: If you were to go to Comic-Con in costume, what would it be?
I would be the most bad-ass Boba Fett.

THR: If you were to work on any other show, what would it be?
I would love to be on Community, and to be able to take a class with Chevy Chase would be fun.

Horowitz: I would want be on Dexter and have a story line where I would track down Eddie as he goes through the city on a killing spree.

Kitsis: And the twist at the end is that I would finally kill Adam.

THR: What show would you want to reboot?
Freaks and Geeks.

THR: What can we expect from the Once Upon a Time panel?
Horowitz: We’re going to screen the pilot and we’re not sure what else. This is the first time we’re having a panel for our own show, and we’re very excited to something fun.

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