By Ashley Benson - @MitigatedText
Ashley: Are you surprised at the response fans have had to the character of Zelena?
Rebecca: I was worried. I was nervous. When I first joined the show I talked to Adam and Eddy and they were like “Get ready for hate! Get ready for hate-tweets” and I was like *crying noises* “I’m a really nice person!” I was really nervous that but the outpouring of love was just a real shock and a delight, because I love the show, I love the fans and interacting with them and I’m really into connecting with my fans, being a part of it with them, and enjoying it with them on social media. So it was great that I didn’t have to block a million people to protect my heart. Everybody’s been really kind and supportive.
Ashley: A lot of fans really want Zelena back, if she were to come back, what do you think her next step would be?
Rebecca: I would definitely want to sees some progression for her in terms of retribution . . . peace. And also, Regina doesn’t have any real family in Storybrooke and I think it would be amazing if the two of them could make up and join forces. Lana brought up at the Fairy Tales convention that we did in Paris that there was this line in that great scene we did together in the jail cell. That as she was leaving, she turned back and looked at me and said, “It’s nice to have family in town.” It was a really cool moment and they cut it out. That made me think that would have been lovely if the two of them could have reconciled and joined forces, because I’ve got an amazing relationship with my sister. She’s my best friend so I would have liked that for them.
Ashley: That’s good to hear. No ripping out of hearts at home?
Rebecca: She hasn’t pissed me off enough yet.
Ashley: Can you talk a little about the make-up process?
Rebecca: The make-up artist had already done her homework established the color and the layers of paint, the different shades of green, how she was going to contour my face. There were five different greens. One eggplant color for contouring to make me look witchy along my collarbone, and my cheekbones, and in my eyes, and then the gold shimmer at the end. That had already been pre-established, but what was up for question and collaboration in terms with the network and the studio, and the execs was my eyebrows and my lashes and my fingernails, whether I was going to have lips or not. They didn’t want me to look too freaky witchy and they didn’t want me to look too sexy, so it was about finding that sort of sweet spot where it was honoring the original character but also being it’s on Once Upon A Time. It’s like a nod to the character but giving it its own Once Upon A Timespin in hot sauce. We did a few variations, but they ended up picking the one that I liked the best. I was like “Yes!” I was so worried that they would pick one that wasn’t my favorite.
Ashley: You have to sit in it all day, too. So how was that?
Rebecca: Once it was on…. it took about an hour to an hour and a half to put on. Obviously the longer we did it the more we got into a rhythm, but taking it off was really hard.
Ashley: You just can’t wipe it off?
Rebecca: Taking it off took about half an hour and two other people and me, scrubbing. So it was great. We would finish a scene and everyone would just bugger off home and I’m like, “’Night, everyone just leave, don’t mind me!” Sit there and get it all off. They would put all these hot towels in a microwave and then use this special oil-based make-up remover and then three of us . . . some at my back, behind my ears, I’m in a nostril, we’re trying to do it as quickly as possible because you just wanted to go home, especially when you wrap at four or five o’clock in the morning. But once it was on, I wasn’t cognizant of it throughout the day because you just don’t really feel it.
Ashley: There wasn’t a heaviness or anything?
Rebecca: Didn’t really feel it, but it was really shocking when I’d catch my reflection. “Oh my God oh my God, I’m green!” You forget because you’re on your ipad, having a cup of tea, having some chocolate, and then you walk past something reflective and I’d have a mini-heart attack. I’d forget how scary I looked.
Ashley: Did you ever miss a spot?
Rebecca: All the time! I’d fly back to LA to see my boyfriend and he’s like “What’s that behind your ear?” There’d be green. Or the hotel that I lived in. There would be green on my towels, and I’m like “What must housekeeping think? ‘What is going on in that room on the 15th floor?’” It just really made me giggle.
Ashley: I do like to hear all your stories from set. But I also want to know about any adlib lines?
Rebecca: I would definitely throw in some cackles that weren’t written. There was one time—I love to do my own stunts with the broomstick—there was one point where I flew up to the sky and there was a camera way up there and I remember lifting my head up and going *cackles* I’d throw in some of my cackles. I just love the fact that—this was not adlibbed, this is what they wrote--When Rumple is on the floor and his son is dying in his arms, “Didn’t you tell them the price?” When I first read in the script that my response is: “Ooops!” I’m like, “Oh my God!” I almost sent myself a hate tweet. That is awful. It’s just awful!
Ashley: That’s your catch-phrase on Twitter now!
Rebecca: The face I do: “Ooops.” People have made little videos and memes out of it. I love it.
Ashley: It’s always interesting that you are filming in a real working town. Now the fans are so invlived. it’s become a big thing for the fans. How was it to film?
Rebecca: It’s hard when you want to keep things a secret. Luckily when I was first the Wicked Witch of the West a lot of my stuff that was shot in Fairy Tale Land was in a forest. So at least I was hidden. They’d put me under a cloak and carry me into the forest. I felt like I was Angelina Jolie. There’s paparazzi following us around in Vancouver all the time, so they had to hide me under a blanket. But it’s tough because we’re right in the middle of town in Steveston, the fans can get quite close and then sometimes they tweet pictures and then it becomes spoilers. With social media it’s impossible to keep things a secret. If someone’s kissing someone or someone’s come into town or even before my stuff had started airing—because we were on a break because it was the Winter Olympics—it was even harder. I’m standing in the middle of Steveston with a dagger, and I’m like, “Oh no, this is already on Twitter. ‘Why has she got his dagger?’” Oh well, what are you going to do?
Ashley: It makes it fun speculation for us.
Rebecca: If anything it actually adds in a way to the show because people just get so excited, and they really are. And that’s what you want. You want people to care and to be interested and excited and to speculate.
Ashley: And they do and I think it’s great hearing all your stories of the panels, how much you guys care as well. It’s true that we all have our stories of that Once saved us all of your great experiences. “My profile is higher that I was on Once Upon a Time” I just think that’s fantastic for the cast. We can tell that you have a lot of fun.
Rebecca: It’s been a real blessing. I’m really grateful. I love the fans and I’m really lucky.
Ashley is a professional event planner, OUaF Forum Administrator, convention enthusiast, and resident sass master. When she's not tweeting up a storm, Ashley also finds the time to write reviews for Once Upon a Time at SpoilerTV.com. Feel free to contact her at @MitigatedText