If there is one thing you can say about Disney and the magical fairytales it has created on the big screen for the past 75 years is that it has given us many heroes, princesses and maniacal villains. The latter is the subject of this article because one of the most infamous of all villains in the Disney universe would have to be Maleficent, evil sorceress and antagonist to Princess Aurora and her struggle to find her true love in Prince Phillip. But as evil and demonic as Maleficent was, it still didn’t stop her from becoming a favorite among fans as one of the most interesting and powerful Villains in Disney lore.
Therefore, it’s no surprise that a live-action film is being dedicated to the character. The film, which will star Angelina Jolie in the title role, isn’t the story of Princess Aurora and how she defeated the evil sorceress, but it is Maleficent’s story of how she came to be so resentful and filled with hate.
Just like the Broadway hit “Wicked” told us the “true” story of Alphaba — the Wicked Witch of the West from the “Wizard of OZ” — so too will “Maleficent” reveal a never- before-seen agle of the character and shed some much needed light on the inner psychoses of the women beneath the horns.
Production is officially underway on Walt Disney’s “Maleficent,” the live-action depiction of the untold tale of the sorceress from “Sleeping Beauty” and we have the first photo of the Oscar-Winning actress Angelina Jolie in character. Take a look at the photo below.
My first thought is just how perfect Jolie is for the role. She is a beautiful woman, but with an otherworldly quality to her beauty and I think this will lend itself strongly to bringing Maleficent to light while keeping her interesting and the audience to connect with her. We have seen that Jolie can act, so the question is will the script be strong enough to captivate audiences?
Jolie has the willingness to truly explore the dark recesses of this character’s psyche in order to bring about a performance that could change an audience’s attitude towards turning a well-known antagonist into the feature film’s central protagonist.
The past few live-action films by Disney haven’t been the most successful, and although “Maleficent” won’t be hitting theaters until early 2014, the way they handle promoting and releasing information on the film could restore faith in those that have lost it.
Even though this one single shot — which appears to be a possible makeup/costume test — gives nowhere near enough information to start judging the film, it is definitely enough to intrigue and spark interest. The rest of what we know is that two Oscar-winners — Robert Stromberg and Rick Baker — are teaming up to direct and do makeup. While Baker has already won seven Oscars for his work in makeup and effects, Stromberg is making his directorial debut with “Maleficent,” so it will be interesting to see how he uses his background in visuals to bring this film to life.
Some of the other members of the cast are Elle Fanning as the young Princess Aurora and India Eisley as the young Maleficent. Rounding off the cast are Sharlto Copley, Juno Temple, Brenton Thwaites, Miranda Richardson, Sam Riley and Imelda Staunton.
What do you think of what you know so far? Can “Maleficent” possibly deliver a film that takes such a beloved villain and transforms her in a way we have never seen before? Do you think Angelina Jolie was the perfect choice for the role or did you have someone else in mind? Leave a comment and let us know.
“Maleficent” is slated to hit theaters March 14, 2014, and will be available in 3D.
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