Disney just sent out a press release this morning announcing that production on Maleficent began on June 13 with Angelina Jolie in the title role. Interestingly enough, for a big ass deal like this, the film’s director is an amateur. Robert Stromberg has won 2 Oscars for production design (Avatar, Alice In Wonderland), but this is his first time running the show. Given Rupert Sanders’s recent success with Snow White And The Huntsman (the movie really is beautiful), it doesn’t seem all that crazy.
Needless to say, the Jolie is the centrepiece of the project. But she’s being supported by an interesting stable of players in Sharlto Copley, Elle Fanning, Sam Riley, the lovable Imelda Staunton, Miranda Richardson (two Harry Potter alumni!), Juno Temple, and Lesley Manville. Now that you see them all lined up like that, it is indeed an interesting stable, but it’s also an impressive one. And here you thought this would just be an exercise in hearing Angelina purr and growl and kill babies.
But it will be a while. Maleficent - in 3D of course - doesn’t open until March 14, 2014. (This is a very bad luck day for Chinese people by the way. 14 is terrible. Must die, must die, that’s what 14 sounds like.) The studio has just released the first image of the Jolie in character wearing a leather headdress in the shape of what appear to be horns which Marc Jacobs will no doubt be sending down the runway soon enough. You do remember this don’t you? Has the Jolie ever been to the Met Gala? Anna Wintour’s theme for 2014 should be The Lady Villains. That’ll get her there.