Thursday, January 19, 2012

Interview: Raphael Sbarge Talks Once Upon a Time |

Read's exclusive interview with actor Raphael Sbarge, who’s currently portraying Archie Hopper, as well as Jiminy Cricket’s human form, in ABC’s acclaimed fantasy fairytale drama ‘Once Upon a Time.’ The series follows Emma Swan (played by Jennifer Morrison), the daughter of Snow White (portrayed by Ginnifer Goodwin) and Prince Charming (played by Joshua Dallas), as she escapes the Evil Queen (portrayed by Lana Parrilla) transported to present day Boston. When contacted by her son Henry (played by Jared S. Gilmore), whom she had given up for adoption when he was born, she discovers that he lives in Storybrooke. Henry informs her that everyone is in really a fairy tale character who is living there in exile. However, because of one of the Evil Queen’s curses, no one remembers their true identity.

Written by: Karen Benardello

Sbarge, who has appeared in over 30 films, including ‘Risky Business’ and ‘Independence Day,’ and has made over 100 guest appearances on such shows as ‘NCIS’ and ‘Burn Notice,’ discusses with us what attracted him to the role of Archie Hopper. He also talks about how ‘Once Upon a Time’ differentiates itself from similarly-themed shows.

ShockYa (SY): You portray psychologist Archie Hopper in ‘Once Upon a Time.’ What was it about the character that convinced you to audition for, and accept, the role?

Raphael Sbarge (RS): The thing that’s so great about this show is how the writers have really put such original spins on the fairy tales we’re all familiar with. That quality storytelling was apparent from the pilot script—it was one of those scripts that actors fall in love with because we get to explore our characters’ journeys in both the fairy tale and modern worlds.

You get to see why Jiminy became a cricket, and you get to watch Archie start to come into his own and out from under Regina’s control. You don’t often get the chance to explore what’s essentially the same character, in so many different ways. What the writers have crafted is just quite magical.

SY: Archie is Jiminy Cricket’s human form in present-day Maine. Since he is such a beloved character, do you feel any pressure to portray him in a particular way?

RS: Definitely—who doesn’t love Jiminy Cricket, after all? I think we all felt a certain responsibility—we wanted to show our respect for these beloved characters from everyone’s youth, but also stay true to the story we’re telling on ‘Once Upon a Time.’

This is where the writing has really helped us, by painting such vivid back stories for our characters that fans tell me they never knew Jiminy was a man who chose to be a cricket! It’s really a testament to our writers that the viewers have bought into the show so much that they don’t realize the stories we’re telling are new.

SY: Archie serves as Storybrooke’s resident therapist, who treats the show’s central characters. What are your thoughts on the psychological evolution of the main characters so far-do you feel they have changed at all since the series launched in October?

RS: Oh, absolutely. I think the Storybrooke characters are starting to question their realities and everything they’ve known and accepted for years. Their world is starting to become more, well, real, now that Emma is in town. And she’s gaining that sense of family and community that she never had as an orphan. Both worlds just continue to expand in such wonderful ways with each script.

To continue reading this interview, please visit: Interview: Raphael Sbarge Talks Once Upon a Time |

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