There’s a special kind of Christmassy magic lurking within the latest international trailer for Cinderella, which stars Downtown Abbey‘s own Lily James as the titular heroine.
Up until now, the footage we’ve seen has helped establish the leading cast members, including the likes of Helena Bonham Carter, Cate Blanchett and Game of Thrones‘ Richard Madden. But this most recent trailer peels back the curtain on some of the awe-inspiring visuals in Kenneth Branagh’s re-telling of the famous fairytale.
Remaining true to the Cinderella we know and love, Branagh’s rendition will see James’ out of luck and out of love domestic servant stumble upon her fairy godmother, who then grants her wish to attend the ball against the better judgement of her evil stepmother — played here by Blanchett on wicked form.
Kenneth Branagh will invite you to the ball when Cinderella makes its splendid bow on March 13th and March 27th in North America and the United Kingdom, respectively.
The story of “Cinderella” follows the fortunes of young Ella whose merchant father remarries following the tragic death of her mother. Keen to support her loving father, Ella welcomes her new stepmother Lady Tremaine and her daughters Anastasia and Drisella into the family home. But, when Ella’s father suddenly and unexpectedly passes away, she finds herself at the mercy of a jealous and cruel new family. Finally relegated to nothing more than a servant girl covered in ashes, and spitefully renamed Cinderella, Ella could easily begin to lose hope.
Yet, despite the cruelty inflicted upon her, Ella is determined to honor her mother’s dying words and to “have courage and be kind.” She will not give in to despair nor despise those who abuse her. And then there is the dashing stranger she meets in the woods. Unaware that he is really a prince, not merely an employee at the Palace, Ella finally feels she has met a kindred soul. It appears as if her fortunes may be about to change when the Palace sends out an open invitation for all maidens to attend a ball, raising Ella’s hopes of once again encountering the charming “Kit.”
Alas, her stepmother forbids her to attend and callously rips apart her dress. But, as in all good fairy tales, help is at hand as a kindly beggar woman steps forward and, armed with a pumpkin and a few mice, changes Cinderella’s life forever.