You didn’t know a live-action Cinderella movie was in the works? It is, and in fact it’ll be heading to theaters on March 13, 2015. Disney’s fairy tale film is directed by Thor‘s Kenneth Branagh and stars Lily James in the title role. Cate Blanchett plays her wicked stepmother, Game of Thrones‘ Richard Madden is the prince, and Helena Bonham-Carter takes on the role of Cinderella’s fairy godmother. Chris Weitz (About a Boy the movie) wrote the script and Simon Kinberg (X-Men: Days of Future Past), Allison Shearmur and David Barron are producers.
The story of Cinderella follows the fortunes of young Ella (Lily James) whose merchant father remarries following the death of her mother. Eager to support her loving father, Ella welcomes her new stepmother (Cate Blanchett) and her daughters Anastasia (Holliday Grainger) and Drisella (Sophie McShera) into the family home. But, when Ella’s father unexpectedly passes away, she finds herself at the mercy of a jealous and cruel new family.
Finally relegated to nothing more than a servant girl covered in ashes, and spitefully renamed Cinderella, Ella could easily begin to lose hope. Yet, despite the cruelty inflicted upon her, Ella is determined to honor her mother’s dying words and to “have courage and be kind.” She will not give in to despair nor despise those who mistreat her. And then there is the dashing stranger she meets in the woods. Unaware that he is really a prince, not merely an apprentice at the Palace, Ella finally feels she has met a kindred soul. It appears her fortunes may be about to change when the Palace sends out an open invitation for all maidens to attend a ball, raising Ella’s hopes of once again encountering the charming Kit (Richard Madden). Alas, her stepmother forbids her to attend and callously rips apart her dress. But, as in all good fairy tales, help is at hand, and a kindly beggar woman (Helena Bonham-Carter) steps forward and – armed with a pumpkin and a few mice – changes Cinderella’s life forever.
-By Rebecca Murray
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