It has been a long time in coming, but Disney’s Maleficent is finally here! By ‘finally here,’ I mean that the marketing campaign has begun. The film does not actually premiere until next May. But the first poster for Maleficent has been released, and now you too can relive all the terror that your three year old self might have felt for Disney’s finest evil fairy.
Maleficent stars Angelina Jolie as the quintessential Disney villain in this revisionist take on the Sleeping Beauty story. It seems that Maleficent did not start off so bad, beginning her life as a pure-hearted young woman living in a peaceful kingdom. Then marauders appear, and Maleficent rises to protect her forest home. She’s betrayed, though, and becomes a hard-hearted sorceress bent on vengeance. Cursing the invading king’s daughter Aurora, Maleficent sets out to take her revenge, only to realize that Aurora might be the key to peace, and her own happiness.
The plot synopsis sounds like a big departure from Disney’s animated version of Sleeping Beauty, where Maleficent made her terrifying debut as a vengeful fairy angry about being left out of Aurora’s birthday celebrations. This version will strive to make us understand the bad fairy, changing her story along the way. It could work; then again, it could be a de-fanging of one of Disney’s finest evil ladies. We shall have to wait and see.
With this first poster, though, Jolie looks nothing short of diabolical. She’s even a reasonable facsimile of the original animated Maleficent, which is enough to give me the shivers. If the film is as good as its star looks, then we’re in for an enjoyable experience next spring.
Maleficent is the directorial debut of Robert Stromberg, who has worked as a production designer and visual effects supervisor on Oz: The Great and Powerful, Avatar, and Alice in Wonderland. At the very least, Maleficent will be visually impressive.
You can check out the first poster below and let us know what you think of Disney’s new take on a classic villain in the comments section. Is Maleficent going to be a winner?