Disney, Live Action, The Latest Animation News

‘Maleficent 2’ Begins Production

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As we reported back in October, Disney is moving forward with a sequel to Maleficent, the 2014 live-action reimagining of Sleeping Beauty. That film fell short of the incredible box office of the studio’s Alice in Wonderland adaptation a few years before but still managed to rake in a healthy $758 million. Disney might want to keep expectations for Maleficent 2 somewhat low though because just two years ago the Alice in Wonderland sequel Alice Through the Looking Glass grossed far, far less than its predecessor.

Angelina Jolie (Maleficent), Elle Fanning (Princess Aurora), Sam Riley (Diaval), Imelda Staunton (Knotgrass), Juno Temple (Thistlewit), and Lesley Manville (Thistlewit) will all be reprising their roles from the first film. The role of Prince Phillip, played in Maleficent by Brenton Thwaites, has been recast with a relatively unknown actor named Harris Dickinson. Michelle Pfeiffer joins the cast in a major role as a character named Queen Ingrith along with Chiwetel Ejiofor, Ed Skrein, and Robert Lindsay in unknown roles.

The first film was plagued with rewrites, reshoots, and other problems during production, which is likely the reason that Robert Stromberg, director of the first film, either declined to direct the sequel or was not asked to return. Instead, Joachim Rønning, director of the most recent Pirates of the Caribbean film, is at the helm, directing from a screenplay by Linda Woolverton, Micah Fitzerman-Blue, and Noah Harpster. Woolverton is credited as the sole screenwriter on Alice Through the Looking Glass, which I personally thought was almost unwatchable and a huge step down from the quality of the first film, so I’m hoping she’s turned in better work here and that the two other writers have done a nice job as well.

Details about the plot of the film are scarce, but we do know that the film will “continue 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.” That sounds pretty boring to me, but I’m hoping for the best and really am rooting for Maleficent 2 to be good and to succeed.

Head over to Elle Fanning’s Instagram to see some fun photos from the first day of shooting.

(Source: D23)

Are you excited for Maleficent 2? Is it destined to follow in the footsteps of Alice Through the Looking Glass, or is there a chance that it will actually be good? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!

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About Angelo Thomas

Angelo Thomas is a student, a filmmaker, and an advocate for eating disorder recovery and awareness, among other things. It's his goal for everything he makes or has a hand in to be something he finds genuinely exciting and engaging and to have some level of meaning and ambition, whether it's a short narrative film, an LGBTQ+ documentary, or even a Taylor Swift music video —​ because that's how the magic happens.
  • Jeremiah


  • No, just no.

  • Jordan Briskin

    You cannot be serious…

  • SurrealKangaroo

    The first one was bad enough.

  • Manuel Orozco

    I found Maleficent to be as beautiful as the original Sleeping Beauty. However, I am unsure of seeing this sequel with the recasting of Prince Phillip.

    • Harith Sami

      Prince Phillip was very bland, am glad they are recasting him, they can always go with the excuse of “he grew up”.

      • Manuel Orozco

        Fine at least they are keeping Phillip and not deleting him as rumored. I’ll have to think about this sone more

  • Rachel Wagner

    Boooooooooooo! What I always wanted a movie with Maleficent and Aurora as the good guys…

    • Zardoz

      Aurora is the Good Gal in the original film last time I check. Its also nice that she actually is a “Character” this time instead of a Mcguffin like in the original animated film. While we were stuck with three lazily written, annoying, dumb, pointless characters throughtout the whole movie.

      As for Maleficent, considering how dumb and lazy her reason for being evil in the original film was. I’ll gladly accept the reason that was given in the la remake.

      • Rachel Wagner

        I completely disagree with everything you said

        • Zardoz

          So I guess you disagree with facts and logic

          • Rachel Wagner

            My statement said I have no interest in a movie with Maleficent and Aurora as the good guys. That doesn’t mean I thought they were both bad guys in the original. The original took one of the strongest characters in Disney history and turned her into a whiny victim of a man. I don’t appreciate that at all. It also ruined the faeries who were actually amazing in the original helping hide Aurora successfully for 16 years and helping Phillip defeat her at the end. In the new film they are the worst. There are 3 of them and their only job is to protect Aurora and they let her walk off a cliff!

            Even so, I don’t think it sounds interesting to have Aurora and Maleficent as the good guys in a movie. Maleficent was a memorable villain. Now she is bland and boring

            And please be real careful assuming your opinions are actually the facts of the situation. Geesh

          • Zardoz

            First off the Movie was Clearly a Analogy on Rape. Considering the climate in Hollywood right now in regards to the subject. Its more relevant then any Disney movie right now.

            Second “Whiny Victim”. So You must feel the same way about any women that fights their rapist. Yes its always the victims fault right? Be sure to remember that when you meet Bill Cosby or Harvey Weinsteins victims on the street.

            Third. Lol amazing? You mean the fact they showed they couldn’t sew, cook, or clean. But we are suppose to believe they took care a baby for 16 years. Thats idiotic and lazy writing at best.

            How about the fact that Aurora and Phillip were put in danger because of them? They put Aurora in danger because of their obnoxious fighting over the dress and they put her in more danger because they brought her back to the castle on her birthday when Maleficents curse clearly said her before the sunsets on her 166h birthday.

            My opinions are based on what actually happened in the movie. Your opinions on the other hand are talking about a movie that never existed. If you took of your rose covered glasses and open your mind you would see it.

  • Harith Sami

    Angelina gave an astonishing performance in the first film, regardless of the plot’s quality. A sequel that focuses more on Maleficent is a welcomed one.

  • It’s not that I didn’t have my issues with the first film (mostly surrounding the horrendous portrayal of the three good fairies), but I still found it fun and enjoyed the heck out of Angelina Jolie’s performance. I’m excited for the sequel, and anyways with how lucrative the first film was, there’s no way Disney wasn’t gonna chase that coin. I do understand the people who are unhappy about it though – probably a good time to rewatch and enjoy the (amazing) original Sleeping Beauty? You do you.

    • Zardoz

      The three good fairies were annoying, dumb and useless characters in the original Sleeping Beauty. I think Maleficent greatly improved them by expanding what the original film unintentionally did with the characters.

      • Annoying is purely subjective, each to their own on that. The fairies definitely had their childish moments in the original, though honestly I enjoy characters who make silly mistakes more. I wouldn’t call being the ones to save Prince Philip and then being basically the only reason he survived escaping Maleficent, and subsequently saving Aurora and the whole kingdom, “useless”. I think it’s cool that the original Sleeping Beauty featured a trio of elderly women at its centre. But again, each to their own. Glad you enjoyed Maleficent’s interpretation of the characters.

        • Zardoz

          Subjective or not. The fact that the Company acknowledged how annoying they are speaks volumes.
          Silly Mistakes? Like getting Aurora and Prince Phillip captured because they fought about the color of a dress. Yeah how silly of them to put two peoples lives in danger🙄. A mistake they didn’t even learn from looking at the end of the film. And of course who can forget the big plot hole they cause in the film. Which is how they were able to raise a baby? when they can’t even cook, clean, or sew.
          Meh them being the films Deux Ex Macina doesn’t erase the fact that it was their stupidity is what caused the problems in the first place.
          Again meh, Disney already had plenty of strong, smart, well written female supporting characters around that time in the Blue Fairy in Pinocchio, The mothers in Bambi or Dumbo, The fairy Godmother in Cinderella etc. if you want to pick from the bottom of barrel thats up to you.

          • Thanks for the totally non-rude condescending discussion made in 100% good faith 🙂 Like I said, each to their own. Hope you continue to enjoy the fairies better in Maleficent 2 👍🏻

          • Jeremiah

            So in the original the fairies uselessly raised Aurora, uselessly freed Prince Philip, and uselessly enchanted his sword to make it kill Dragon-Maleficent?

          • Zardoz

            Considering in the movie they couldn’t Sew, Cook , or clean without magic. Them raising a baby made no sense. Hence the idiotic and lazy writing of the original film especially with those characters. So yes they are useless.

            Why was Philip captured in the first place? Oh yes because they’re immature fight over the dress help the Crow find the cottage. Also they didn’t even bother to find out who the guy Aurora met in the forest was. Again stupidity

            Here is a bonus stupidity trivia about the fairies. Why did they return Aurora on her birthday? When Maleficents curse clearly said “Before the Sunsets on Her 16th birthday” Gee did they think that Maleficent was just going to not fulfill her curse after a certain time of her birthday.


          • Jeremiah

            So serious. Sarcasm aside, do you need a mental hug?

          • Zardoz
          • Jeremiah

            If you’re going to post a meme of that guy, I must abandon ship. No hard feelings? All good?

          • Zardoz

            Lol I can post whatever I want. I picked Trump because he is a disgusting human being and wanted my meme to generate the same response.

            Hard feelings?lol I don’t care if you stop responding. You haven’t really made a strong case at all. Just trying to act snarky and now using Trump as an excuse to retreat. You wasting my time littleboy

  • Fadi Antwan

    It seems I’m one of the few people who enjoyed Maleficent. It did its own thing, and I didn’t take it too seriously especially since Sleeping Beauty is my least favorite Disney princess movie (I just find it to be very bland). And of course, Angelina Jolie is very fun to watch as Maleficent. So I’ll give this sequel a watch.

  • Jordann William Edwards

    You say you’re hoping, but y’all better be praying, too.

    I had my chance.

  • All I’m hoping for is that Aurora and Diavall are a couple of sorts, I mean that traction they had in the other film COME ON!! But other than that I will hold my breathe 🙂