The next time we see Cate Blanchett will be in her New Age form as Galadriel, the ethereal elf, in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. But although Blanchett often plays those kinds of positive, likable characters, she’s also more than capable of being quite terrifying when she puts her mind to it. In the upcoming version of Cinderella directed by Kenneth Branagh, Blanchett will appear as the wicked stepmother who makes life difficult for her new daughter.
You all know the story of Cinderella: lovely young lady Ella (Lily James) tries to be a good daughter to her merchant father (Ben Chaplin) and welcome her stepmother, Lady Tremaine (Blanchett), and two stepsisters, Anastasia (Holliday Grainger) and Drisella (Sophie McShera), into the family. But when the father dies, things go sour for our heroine.
Her stepmother turns out to be a jealous and evil woman, and her stepsisters follow in their mother’s footsteps. Relegated to being a servant girl and re-christened Cinderella, Ella begins to find it difficult to turn the other cheek to her abusers. When she meets a handsome stranger in the woods, she thinks he’s just another servant in the Palace – but of course, he’s Prince Charming (Richard Madden), and the stage is set for a quality Disney fairytale.
Following the interesting reinterpretation of Maleficent this year, Cinderella sounds on the surface to be simply a rehash of the original Disney animated film. Could we be in for a nastier version of Cinderella, this time perhaps featuring some of the more violent aspects of the Grimm story? Probably not, but one can always hope. At the very least, Blanchett looks appropriately haughty in her character poster, so we can expect a solid Disney villain from her. For the rest of it, we will just have to wait and see.
Cinderella will premiere on March 13, 2015. You can check out the latest character poster below.