“There is evil in this world, and hatred, and revenge.” So warns Angelina Jolie, playing the title character in a new trailer for Disney’s coming fantasy “Maleficent.”
But is Maleficent herself — she of the horned headdress, black robe and sinister curses — evil, or just misunderstood? That’s one of the questions posed by the movie, which opens May 30 and approaches the classic “Sleeping Beauty” fairy tale from the perspective of the iconic villainess.
The movie is directed by Robert Stromberg from a screenplay by Linda Woolverton.
In the trailer, which you can watch above, Maleficent makes a dramatic entrance and casts an ominous spell over the newborn princess Aurora (Elle Fanning), promising that the girl “will fall into a sleep like death” on her 16th birthday.
The second half of the video provides a few clues as to what drove Maleficent to become so coldhearted.
“I had wings once, and they were strong, but they were stolen from me,” she says over shots of her soaring through the air.
Eventually, Aurora finds herself caught in the middle of a war between her father, the king (Sharlto Copley), and Maleficent’s supernatural forces, which include tree-like beasts and a fire-breathing dragon that into which the sorceress may have transformed.
Fans of Disney’s 1959 animated take on “Sleeping Beauty” will recall that Maleficent did just that. This time around, however, Jolie could have audiences cheering her side on.