Michelle Pfeiffer was the first Hollywood beauty to fill the shoes of an evil antagonist in Stardust and Charlize Theron followed suit in Snow White and the Huntsman; now as Maleficent, Angelina Jolie is the Disney version of Theron’s evil queen. We have included the trailer down at the bottom of this article for you viewing pleasure.
Unlike Theron’s evil stepmother queen to Kristen Stewart’s Snow White, Maleficent does not actually start out as a villain. In the Disney film, Jolie’s character starts out as a “good guy” type character. It is through an act of treachery that Angelina’s “pure hearted” protector becomes the legendary evil influence in Sleeping Beauty.
Following the well known adage that the villain is the hero of their own story, Roth Films and the Moving Picture Company (MPC) have decided to produce the Maleficent film with the traditional “baddie” as protagonist turned antagonist. Somewhat like Bryan Cranston’s Walter White character in Breaking Bad.
This is not the first time that one of the world’s most beautiful women has been cast as the evil nemesis in a Disney -esque fairy tale. Both Charlize Theron and Angelina Jolie, who are the same age at 38, have another thing or two in common. Both women have appeared as the “big bad” in a “Disney” based film, and both movies have the production company Roth Films behind them.
For the film Snow White and the Huntsman, where Theron was suitably scary as the horrid mirror watching stepmother of the film’s hero, Roth Films teamed up with Universal Pictures to make the film. Now for the film Maleficent, Roth have teamed up with Moving Picture Company to produce the film and Disney will distribute the film.
With the Roth Films link, it is not surprising that Angelina Jolie was chosen to play Sleeping Beauty’s arch enemy Maleficent. One difference in the beautiful antagonists is that Theron was an over the top, deeply evil; deeply flawed villain. Jolie is flawed, but, she begins as the protector of her forest realm and after she is “ruthlessly” betrayed, her “pure heart” is turned to stone.
In essence, the influence of Roth Films shows in the choice of villain in the two films. In Maleficent Angelina Jolie is the Disney version of Charlize Theron and this casting choice seems to suggest that there is indeed evil behind all that beauty.
Angelina Jolie is not the only beautiful creature in the film. Elle Fanning, sister of Dakota, plays Princess Aurora, aka Sleeping Beauty. The 15 year-old actress; whose 19 year-old sister is an award winning actress, may not have as many awards as her older sister, but she is well on her way to catching up. Not only does Elle have the same acting chops as sis, but she shares the older Fanning girl’s looks as well.
American actress Jolie will be joined by an excellent English cast of brilliant actors; Imelda Staunton (Vera Drake); Sam Riley (Brighton Rock); Juno Temple (The Dark Knight Rises); Lesley Manville (Another Year) and South African actor Sharlto Copley (District 9).
The film, directed by Robert Stromberg; marks his debut as director and the screenplay was written by Lina Woolverton. This dark film, which gives us the “real” story behind Maleficent’s beginnings, has Angelina Jolie as Disney’s version of Charlize Theron’s evil queen. It is due to hit cinemas May 2014. You can watch the trailer to Maleficent below.
By Michael Smith