Season 5 of Once Upon a Time won’t premiere until the fall, but we’re starting to get a glimpse into what to expect when the fairy tale drama returns. Three new characters are joining the show and two current cast members have just been promoted to series regulars. Read on to find out all the details.

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Merlin, King Arthur and Guinevere

First, fans know that each season introduces new characters for our favorites to interact with, whether they be heroes or villains. And season 5 will see at least three new characters coming to the forefront, as reported by TV Line. While nobody has been cast in these recurring roles yet, we do have some character descriptions.

Merlin was mentioned in the season 4 closer, so it only seems natural for him to show up on Once Upon a Time now. The show is going through the casting process and looking for a black British man to play Merlin, being described as “a man with great wisdom and intelligence beyond his years.”

The other new characters are King Arthur and Guinevere. Arthur’s character description says he’s a “good and just ruler [who] is a master manipulator who can carry a grudge to the grave, and maybe beyond.” He has an “eternal burning love” for Guinevere, but that love may not be as healthy as you might think; he tends to get somewhat controlling.

And speaking of Guinevere, this “headstrong queen” fell for one of Arthur’s knights, the one and only Lancelot. But can she find happiness in her life while also not disrupting those who live in Camelot? Lancelot has been featured on OUAT before, but it’s unclear how this will play out in season 5, considering he’s not alive in the OUAT universe — or is he? I guess we’ll find out in the fall. Producers are looking for a Latina to play Guinevere.

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Two Actors Promoted to Series Regulars

Those character additions aren’t the only news coming out of the world of Once Upon a Time. TV Line is also reporting that Sean Maguire and Rebecca Mader, who play Robin Hood and Zelena, respectively, are becoming series regulars for season 5. While we see Robin quite a bit on the show, it’s big news that viewers will get to see a lot more of Mader. But considering the way Zelena’s storyline played out at the end of season 4, it doesn’t come as a huge surprise.

Both Robin and Zelena’s storylines are very intertwined at this point. We thought we had seen the last of Regina’s half-sister after her arc seemingly ended in the season 3 finale. But she reappeared with a vengeance the following season when she changed her appearance to make Robin and others thing she was Marian.

The shockers didn’t end there, of course. Zelena revealed that she’s pregnant with Robin’s baby. The last we saw of her, she was behind bars, but I think it’s safe to say that with this promotion, Mader’s character won’t be locked up for long. Maguire and Mader being series regulars means this twisted storyline will become a much bigger factor in season 5.

What do you make of all this news? How do you think Merlin, King Arthur and Guinevere will factor into the storylines? And are you excited to see Maguire and Mader as series regulars?

Once Upon a Time season 5 will premiere in fall of 2015 on ABC.

(Image courtesy of ABC)

Jeff Dodge

Staff Writer, BuddyTV

Jeff Dodge, a graduate of Western Washington University, has been a TV news editor for many years and has had the chance to interview multiple reality show stars, including Randy Jackson, Nick Cannon, Heidi Klum, Mel B and John Cena.