After approximately three months of filming, Maleficent 2 has wrapped production with its director making the announcement on social media. The original Maleficent movie released in May 2014, with Angelina Jolie in the starring role. Taking the unorthodox route of showing a sympathetic side to the dark villain from the classic Sleeping Beauty animated movie, it opened to mixed reviews. However, it went on to become one of the biggest grossing films of that year, and has impressively earned over $758 million worldwide.
The film concluded with Maleficent waking Princess Aurora (Elle Fanning) rather than Prince Phillip, and with the cruel king defeated. As such the story lent itself to further exploration of the kingdoms created and the central relationship, which no longer fit Disney stereotypes. The production was dependent on Jolie's availability, which wasn't confirmed until late last year. After working with Disney on Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, Rønning was recruited to helm the project, which started filming this past May.
To mark the successful completion of the production at Pinewood Studios, Rønning gathered the crew and cast together on the set and took a photo. Posting it on his personal Instagram account, Rønning thanked everyone and ironically noted that the fantasy kingdom lies close to Heathrow, London's busiest airport. You can check out the post below, where Jolie can be seen just to the right of the clapperboard.
In a separate post, Fanning also acknowledged the end of the filming via her own Instagram account, and stated that she was looking forward to the release in 2020. Along with the returning Jolie and Fanning, the film has an impressive cast, including Michelle Pfeiffer as Queen Ingrith, Harris Dickinson as Prince Phillip, and Chiwetel Ejiofor as a possible romantic interest for the title character. Imelda Staunton, Juno Temple, and Lesley Manville also return as the bumbling pixies, with Ed Skrein starring in reportedly villainous role.
Now free from all the narrative trappings of the original Sleeping Beauty, it will be interesting to see the interactions between the characters and the directions that the story will now take. The current synopsis for Maleficent 2 doesn't give too much away, but hints that the safety of the magical moors will be integral to the plot. The long post-production work will no doubt be used to create the magical creatures living in that area, and visualizing Maleficent's newly-recovered powers. It will also be intriguing to see what kind of relationship exists between Maleficent and Ingrith, as conflict between the two actresses could be a highlight of the movie. We look forward to finding out more about this Disney sequel as the release date gets nearer.
Maleficent 2 releases on May 29, 2020.
Source: Joachim Rønning