Maleficent

Find out the story behind Sleeping Beauty’s evil curse-caster in Disney’s live-action fantasy

Apr 29, 2014 | By Kelli Plasket
DISNEY ENTERPRISES, INC.

Elle Fanning plays the role of Princess Aurora in Disney's unpcoming fantasy film, Maleficent.

Rated PG (for scenes of fantasy action and violence, including frightening images)

Release Date: May 30 (in theaters and 3D)

Directed by Robert Stromberg

Starring Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning, Sharlto Copley, Sam Riley, Imelda Staunton, Juno Temple, Lesley Manville

Can a villain who calls herself “the mistress of all evil” and puts a sinister curse on a royal baby be made sympathetic to audiences?  That’s the challenge facing Maleficent, a new live-action Disney movie that tells the previously untold story of the evil fairy from Disney’s 1959 animated musical Sleeping Beauty. Viewers will find out the real story of why Maleficent, played by Angelina Jolie, was driven by revenge to curse Princess Aurora, played by Elle Fanning, 16. Elle, who was a big Sleeping Beauty fan growing up, is already convinced. “[As a kid,] Maleficent did scare me, but I wasn’t terrified,” Elle told TFK. “She kind of put me in a trance when I was young. I was mesmerized by her. She’s so evil but so elegant.” After learning her backstory, Elle adds, “I have sympathy for her now.”

Did You Know?

In the movie, a toddler version of Princess Aurora is played by Angelina Jolie’s daughter, Vivienne. Jolie, who has six children with actor Brad Pritt, told Entertainment Weekly that Vivienne was chosen for the role because other young performers wouldn’t come near her as scary Maleficent. Her kids Pax and Zahara also make cameos in the film. “All her kids were on set,” Elle Fanning, who plays teenage Aurora, told TFK. “So [Jolie would] be in full make-up—with the horns and cheek bones and all that—and holding both her twins [Vivienne and Knox]. It was really cool to see.”

Check back later for a Q&A with Elle Fanning, who plays Princess Aurora.