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Once Upon a Time

Who Is Colin O’Donoghue? 6 Things to Know About OUAT’s Captain Hook

You know Irish hot-attack Colin O’Donoghue has been cast as Captain Hook on Once Upon a Time Season 2. You know he was recently promoted to series regular. And if you’ve seen this season preview and this sneak peek photo, you know Colin’s owning his sexy bad boy rock star persona. (Nice guyliner!) Hook will make his grand entrance on Episode 4: “The Crocodile,” and afterward we’re guessing he’s going to be the official crush of many a besotted Oncer. So here are six things to know about the captain of the newly formed Team Hookers.

1. He's touted as the next Colin Farrell
Colin, age 31, was born on January 26, 1981 in Drogheda, on the East Coast of Ireland. According to his official website, he has a long list of theater credits, including Eclipse at Olivier Theatre in London, Eugene Onegin - The Roadshow at Something Different Theatre Co., Othello at Second Age Theatre Co. and Taming of the Shrew at Rough Magic Theatre Co. In 2003, he won the Irish Film and Television Award for “Best New Talent” for his role as Norman in the TV drama Home For Christmas. Irish actor Ciaran Hinds, who appeared with Colin in The Rite, told the Irish Independent Colin's rush of fame is due to a combination of talent, hard work and fate. "I think he's a terrific actor," Ciaran said. Anthony Hopkins, who also starred with Colin in The Rite, is also said to have described Colin's work as "extraordinary." Colin has repeatedly been touted as the next version of that other hot Irish guy, Colin Farrell. Our Colin said it’s mostly because they both have the same name.

2. He’s married
Let’s just get this one out of the way. Unless circumstances have recently changed, Colin is married to a lovely lady named Helen. He posed with her when she joined him on the red carpet in early 2011 at Dublin's Savoy Cinema for the European premiere of The Rite. In addition to Helen, Colin's proud parents and grandparents also attended the premiere. "He's been working hard and we're delighted now that he has got to this stage," his mother told the Irish Independent. We always knew that was what he wanted so we said 'do what you want to do.’" They must be super proud that he landed a role on a popular show like OUAT!

3. He is a rock star
No wonder he looks like one! Colin plays guitar in a band called The Enemies, which was formed in 2003. He talked a bit about the band — and a lot about Anthony Hopkins and The Rite — in this 11-minute interview with Britain's Late Late Show in March 2011. His Irish accent is every bit as adorable as you’d imagine.

4. He filmed an ABC pilot called Identity
Once upon a time, ABC decided to adapt a British police show called Identity. It was supposed to star Angela Bassett, among others, including Colin as a former undercover FBI agent named John Bloom. In March 2011, Colin was reportedly filming the pilot in Montreal. The show didn't seem to go anywhere, but ABC must've loved what they got from Colin since they cast him for OUAT — which films on the other side of Canada in Vancouver. Colin has also appeared in other UK TV shows, including the Irish medical drama The Clinic and the Irish soap opera Fair City. You can watch a clip of him in The Clinic around the 8:30 mark of this TV interview.

5. He has a history with Sarah Bolger
No, not like that. Although, who knows. Sarah, who joined OUAT as Sleeping Beauty on Season 2, starred as Princess Mary in The Tudors. Colin played Duke Philip of Bavaria on the Showtime series. Both Colin and Sarah are up-and-coming Irish actors and they posed together at the premiere of Transformers: Dark of the Moon in June 2011. Not that they arrived as a couple — Colin was also photographed with his wife Helen. Just recently on October 3, Colin tweeted about a “fun evening” out with OUAT co-stars Sarah, Emilie de Ravin and Jamie Chung.

6. His dog is cute too
Colin has a Labrador/spaniel cross named Buckley, aka Bucks Bucks. Here’s a shot of Buckley sleeping. (Aww!) This is not a photo of Buckley, but it is a photo Colin tweeted of himself with a friend’s pirate dog. The dog has a Hook arm! Adorable!!

Catch the next new episode of Once Upon a Time on Sunday, October 7 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.

Sources: ShowBiz Ireland, Irish Independent,, YouTube, @colinodonoghue1

Gina Carbone is a contributing writer at Wetpaint Entertainment. Follow her on Twitter @ginacarbone.

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10.5.2012 / 12:35 AM EDT by Gina Carbone
Related: Once Upon a Time, TV Stars, Once Upon a Time Season 2

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