The best villains are ones we love to hate. Maleficent, the evil fairy and Mistress of All Evil from SLEEPING BEAUTY, is the grande dame of Disney evildoers — especially when she’s played by Angelina Jolie. MALEFICENT opened in 2014, just as Disney’s slate of live-action remakes of animated classics was ramping up. We’ve waited years for the new MALEFICENT movie, and the news is good: MALEFICENT 2 is almost here!
The sequel is in post-production, with a prime 2019 release date set. Jolie returns in the title role, with Michelle Pfeiffer and Ed Skrein joining to play new characters. Here’s everything we know about the MALEFICENT sequel.
When Can We See It?
MALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVIL was originally set to arrive on May 29, 2020. Then, Disney moved the release date up to October 18, 2019! At the same time as the new release date was announced, Disney revealed the film’s proper title.
A movie with the subtitle MISTRESS OF EVIL certainly deserves a Halloween release date. So, we’ll call this a treat from the studio, rather than a trick!
Is There a Maleficent: Mistress of Evil Trailer?
We would like to use some dark fairy magic to conjure footage, but there is no trailer yet. What we do have right now is the first poster for the movie, which you can see above. That’s the only official image of Angelina Jolie in costume for the sequel. (Prior to that, Disney released the photo of directors’ chairs seen in the section above.)
That said, in early April, Disney did show off footage at CinemaCon 2019 in Las Vegas. The sizzle reel began with a recap of the first movie, before offering new behind-the-scenes footage. The reel set up the power struggle between Maleficent and Queen Ingrith, played by Michelle Pfeiffer. Each wants to be the most significant figure in the life of Princess Aurora (Elle Fanning). The sizzle reel was narrated by Queen Ingrith, which may be a clue that this film will be told at least partially from her perspective.
Why Has Maleficent: Mistress of Evil Taken So Long?
MALEFICENT was one of Disney’s first live-action forays into previously animated territory. It followed the massive success of Tim Burton’s 3D ALICE IN WONDERLAND, released in 2010. (Burton’s movie benefitted from opening just a few months after the release of AVATAR, which refreshed interest in 3D movies. ALICE IN WONDERLAND was the next big 3D film released after AVATAR.)
The original MALEFICENT was a success in 2014, and Disney began development on a sequel quickly. But lining up the schedules for stars like Angelina Jolie and Elle Fanning isn’t easy. And Jolie worked with the writers and producers to get the script just right. There are boring logistical details, too, like booking enough studio space to make the movie!
The Maleficent: Mistress of Evil Story
On May 29, 2018, Disney announced the start of production on MALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVIL, then called MALEFICENT II. The press release featured the following story synopsis:
A fantasy adventure that picks up several years after MALEFICENT, in which audiences learned of the events that hardened the heart of Disney’s most notorious villain and drove her to curse a baby Princess Aurora, MALEFICENT II continues to explore the complex relationship between the horned fairy and the soon to be Queen, as they form new alliances and face new adversaries in their struggle to protect the moors and the magical creatures that reside within.
At CinemaCon, the new sizzle reel featured a few quotes from Angelina Jolie that add more context to that synopsis. Jolie said, “In this film, we pose the question is Maleficent good enough to be Aurora’s mother?”
Things between the characters begin to come to a head when Prince Phillip proposes to Aurora, leading the Queen to assert her position as an authority over Aurora. She tells Maleficent that she can provide the “love of a real family” — implying that Maleficent cannot. You can imagine how Jolie’s character takes that slight. By the way, in the dinner scene featured in the sizzle reel, Maleficent is wearing a sort of dinner gown with a ring of bird bones and skulls at the neck. It’s both incredibly awesome and suggestive of her personality.
There’s also the question of whether Aurora even wants to get married. A few lines of dialogue suggest she’s not totally sold on the idea. We’ll see what she’s learned from her adoptive mother in the years since the first movie. Perhaps this sequel will reveal that the Princess has new powers of her own to unleash.
Who Are the New Maleficent: Mistress of Evil Actors?
While we don’t have a lot of MALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVIL story info, we do know a lot about the actors who are joining the cast. Michelle Pfeiffer returns to the Disney fold (after shooting ANT-MAN AND THE WASP and AVENGERS: ENDGAME) to play Queen Ingrith.
Ed Skrein (DEADPOOL) plays a new villain, while Chiwetel Ejiofor (DOCTOR STRANGE) appears as a character summoned by Maleficent. And Robert Lindsay (WIMBLEDON) is in the cast along with Harris Dickinson (THE DARKEST MINDS), who plays Queen Ingrith’s son, Prince Phillip. He replaces Brenton Thwaites, who played the character in the original movie.
Many Favorite Cast Members Are Back!
Of course, Angelina Jolie is donning her stunning Maleficent costume once again, but she’s not the only returning cast member. Elle Fanning reprises the role of Aurora, daughter of the man who once spurned Maleficent and originally the target of a sleeping curse. Aurora was made Queen at the end of the first movie, and she and Maleficent developed a daughter-mother relationship.
Sam Riley is also back as Diaval, the raven who does Maleficent’s bidding and is changed into various forms. Imelda Staunton, Juno Temple and Lesley Manville all reprise their characters as well.
Come back to the AMC Scene for more info on the new MALEFICENT sequel as it takes form!