If you’re Disney and Kenneth Branagh and you’re going to make an elaborate, live-action adaptation of Cinderella (and they are), then it’s kind of a no-brainer to go after Emma Watson for you lead (and they apparently have).
The film will be the latest in Disney’s announced live-action projects that exploit their long-standing properties in new ways, joining Maleficent with Angelina Jolie, Jon Favreau’s Magic Kingdom, and even Brad Bird’s Tomorrowland. The Mouse House is getting aggressive of late.
My one hope is that Melficent and this new Cinderella project aren’t destined to follow the Alice In Wonderland and Oz: The Great & Powerful aesthetic. Even as CGI improves, it’s an ugly thing to be thrust into these top-to-bottom effects films that are essentially cartoons with people composited in, except missing the beautiful animation because everything is an uncanny attempt at photorealism. That’s just me though.
As for the Perks Of Being A Wallflower star and Harry Potter alumna potentially leading it, I’m totally on board with seeing Watson in a film like this. She doesn’t have the viral, GIF-ready quality of an Emma Stone or Jenny Lawrence, but she has something different and just as special going for her. In fact, I believe Watson has the ability to become a sort of traditional superstar actress in the classical, elegant mold that we don’t actually see too much anymore. The industry has become so hostile towards women that it’s difficult to keep any kind of momentum as an actress, much less achieve that timeless A-list status. This is why someone like Angelina Jolie largely stands alone. Watson though, has that glamour, the multi-generational appeal, the raw star power, and the brains to get there, and a role like this would be a first step towards exactly that. I get a sense that this and and Maleficent are not going to be throwaway fairy tale blockbusters, but rich, sophisticated tentpoles. Disney doesn’t mess around with their flagship icons, and you don’t get more important than Cinderella for Disney.
Now we’ll just see if Watson signs, and who else Branagh and company bring on to the project.
Source | Variety