Premiering out in Berlin this weekend, Disney returns us to the world of live-action fairy tales with Kenneth Branagh’s latest blockbuster, Cinderella.
The film sees the young Lily James take centre stage as our heroine, Ella. And with just over a month to go before it arrives in cinemas, the studio has launched a new trailer to whet our appetites for the magical fantasy.
The story of “Cinderella” follows the fortunes of young Ella (Lily James) whose merchant father remarries following the death of her mother. Eager to support her loving father, Ella welcomes her new stepmother (Cate Blanchett) and her daughters Anastasia (Holliday Grainger) and Drisella (Sophie McShera) into the family home. But, when Ella’s father 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 mistreat her. And then there is the dashing stranger she meets in the woods. Unaware that he is really a prince, not merely an apprentice at the Palace, Ella finally feels she has met a kindred soul. It appears 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 (Richard Madden). Alas, her stepmother forbids her to attend and callously rips apart her dress. But, as in all good fairy tales, help is at hand, and a kindly beggar woman (Helena Bonham-Carter) steps forward and — armed with a pumpkin and a few mice — changes Cinderella’s life forever.
Richard Madden stars opposite as Kit (Prince Charming), with Cate Blanchett and Helena Bonham Carter topping the ensemble alongside Holliday Grainger, Sophie McShera, Stellan Skarsgård, and Derek Jacobi.
Branagh directs from a script penned by Oscar nominee Chris Weitz (About a Boy).
And fans of Disney’s Frozen can look forward to their latest animated short, Frozen Fever, attached to the movie.
Cinderella will be released in the US on 13th March, following in the UK on 27th March.