The Snow Queen’s dark past was revealed on “Once Upon a Time,” and although Elizabeth Mitchell didn’t know Ingrid’s full history when she took on the role, she had an inkling based on her conversations with executive producers Adam Horowitz and Eddy Kitsis.
“They told me it was something huge and it had something to do with family and that it forever changed who she was and I kind of just figured that must be what it was,” Elizabeth told Access Hollywood on Monday about the back-in-time twist, which played out on this past Sunday’s “Once,” revealing that Ingrid accidentally killed one of her sisters by accident.
“I kind of thought, ‘What would be worse than taking away the life of someone that you love by accident. …. What would that do to you?’” she continued.
Elizabeth said she actually didn’t find out the backstory until shortly before filming that particular episode, but her instincts prompted her to play a character with painful past.
“They didn’t tell me until a few episodes before, but it’s kind of how I had been playing it, you know, someone who had been kind of desperately wounded, because they told me it wasn’t romantic, which gave me an idea of playing her as a woman who really hadn’t had love in her life — hadn’t fallen in love. But when would she have had the chance to?” Elizabeth explained.
In Sunday’s episode, after Ingrid accidentally froze her sister Helga, and then broke her ice frame into pieces (another accident), Ingrid’s other sister, Gerda, put her in the urn for everyone’s safety.
Arendale’s Pabbie the Rock Troll made everyone forget about Helga and Ingrid, while Ingrid had to deal with her feelings for 30 years in the urn, and it has turned her into the driven Snow Queen she is now, in Storybrooke.
“I think that you lock somebody up even in just a cage for a year and they’ll go out of their mind. This is 30 years, this is a crazy woman, so I think she’s completely mad,” Elizabeth said.
As viewers have learned, Ingrid is trying to make Emma (Jennifer Morrison) and Elsa (Georgina Haig) her replacement sisters, three sisters all with power. Her plan is as mad as she is, but is there any hope that she can change her mind or her ways?
“Whether or not she can come back, I don’t know. It’s interesting,” Elizabeth said. “I do believe that people can be redeemed, but it’s a hard case here. I mean, she’s basically saying that people who are magical are worth something and people who are not, are not and that’s really terrifying to me. Any time you get into that is really pretty horrifying to me.”