Cinderella is headed to the big screen...again!
Sixty-five years after Walt Disney Pictures released its animated classic, the beloved fairy tale is getting the live-action treatment courtesy of director Sir Kenneth Branagh and Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. The movie, in theaters March 13, 2015, stars Downton Abbey's Lily James as the titular character. Academy Award winner Cate Blanchett plays her wicked stepmother, Lady Tremaine, and Helena Bonham Carter plays her fairy godmother. Nonso Anozie, Hayley Atwell, Ben Chaplin, Holliday Grainger, Derek Jacobi, Richard Madden, Sophie McShera and Stellan Skarsgård round out the cast.
Of course, Cinderella posed a unique set of challenges. "It's a very unusual project because anybody sitting down almost certainly knows the story. They've had it read to them or they've seen the film. I think we get to refresh, reactive and recreate Cinderella from the inside out," Branagh tells E! News. "The honoring of the original comes in, I think, as sort of a lightness of touch and a sort of lavishness."
"I wanted to take the world of the ball. Life can be pretty rough sometimes and it's a wonderful thing to be able to invite the world to the ball," Branagh, a five-time Academy Award nominee, continues. "And then, from the inside, we've given it a contemporary feel that is human and humane and strangely enough, not built around the idea that Cinderella's life depends on finding a man or things, like clothes or a title, or just hoping this magic will come along. It's much more about who she is, what she feels about herself, and taking that kind of sort of spiritual cue to make it refreshing in a contemporary way."