Run Emma Run! In Once Upon a Time 2×14 Manhattan, Emma (Jennifer Morrison) chases a man in a grey hoodie — who she thinks could be Rumple’s son Bae — through SoHo in New York City (Gastown in Vancouver). He jumps from an old wrought iron fire escape staircase down onto the street below (Powell Street), runs along the sidewalk and through a cobbled square (Maple Tree Square) dodging yellow NYC taxi-cabs, past SoParlo Boots (prop sign) into a corridor (Gaelor’s Mews) of stores and restaurants until she tackles him in an alley (east end of Trounce Alley in Blood Alley Square).
Once Upon a Time filmed this foot chase in mid-December in four legs with Jennifer Morrison doing all her own running stunts and some of the tackling. The day started in reverse with the Emma stunt double tackling the Grey-Hoodie-Man stunt double in the east end of Trounce Alley, followed by a dialogue scene of Morrison getting up from the ground, seeing the actor (not stunt double) who she’d tackled and talking to him. Each time the two actors finished a take they dissolved into fits of laughter. The Trounce Alley part of the foot chase sequence was closed to the public but I could see the two actors’ heads through the glass windows of a restaurant from the south end of the Coffee Bar. I stayed at my Coffee Bar window seat to watch the next leg of Morrison running from prop SoParlo Boots on Carrall Street right past me through Gaelor’s Mews. Don’t listen to anyone who says Morrison is a diva. None of the Once Upon a Time cast are from what I’ve seen. Morrison did all of Emma’s running in take after take. Smiling and laughing from the exhilaration.
Next came the big public scene of Jennifer Morrison chasing the Grey-Hoodie-Man stunt double though Maple Tree Square dodging yellow NYC taxi cabs and other prop vehicles in front of spectators, fans and photographers. She did it once in rehearsal with the Emma stunt double leading the way. I photographed the rehearsal (not well) but agreed to put away my camera when she did the stunt solo..
In late afternoon, Once Upon a Time filmed the start of the foot chase. The Grey-Hoodie-Man stunt double jumped from the wrought-iron fire escape stair ladder at the prop Hotel Manhattan onto the ground at 000 block Powell Street. The fire escape is a clue for any avid Once Upon a Time watcher who hasn’t been spoiled already about the identity of the Grey-Hoodie-Man. Once Upon a Time tried to protect his identity by using a stunt double for every scene except the early morning dialogue one in Blood Alley Square.
Once Upon a Time airs on Sundays at 8 p.m. on ABC in the U.S. and at variable times on CTV in Canada.