Disney is developing another "Maleficent" movie. Will sequel-averse Angelina Jolie do it? http://t.co/8z2doJCtJL— Los Angeles Times (@latimes) June 16, 2015
Last summer Disney's "Maleficent" bewitched moviegoers with a revisionist take on the "Sleeping Beauty" tale and a star turn from Angelina Jolie, who gamely embodied the dark fairy in all her horned, high-cheekboned glory.
Now, a year after the film hauled in $758 million at the worldwide box office, Disney is developing a sequel with Linda Woolverton returning to write the script, The Times has confirmed. Deadline Hollywood first reported the news.
Given "Maleficent's" commercial success, getting the ball rolling on a sequel is a no-brainer. But the big question is whether Jolie would come back. The script is being written with her return in mind, but no deal is in place yet.
As an actress, Jolie has proved somewhat averse to sequels. In recent years she was involved in developing follow-ups to the action movies "Salt" and "Wanted," but neither ever materialized.
While she has lent her voice to three "Kung Fu Panda" animated movies (the third of which is due in January), Jolie's only live-action role reprisal was more than a decade ago, in 2003's "Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life," a sequel to the 2001 movie "Lara Croft: Tomb Raider." And that didn't work out so well.
Asked about the prospects of her doing a "Maleficent" sequel last year, Jolie told USA Today, "I don't know. I enjoyed ['Maleficent']. I just feel like we did this one thoroughly and I don’t think there'd be another. I feel like this is the one, if I was going to ever do a Disney one, this is the one I wanted to do. And I think we've done it well."
That was, however, before "Maleficent" became a hit.
Jolie has been choosy about her franchise acting roles as she develops her prestige-film directing career — including last year's WWII tale "Unbroken" and her upcoming "By the Sea," a romantic drama starring Jolie and husband Brad Pitt that will arrive in November. She also has the Richard Leakey biopic "Africa" in her crosshairs.
Disney, though, has made live-action fairy tales a priority. (Other projects include "Cinderella," "Beauty and the Beast" and "Mulan.") "Maleficent" has particular appeal since it's one of the few to be a recent screen hit.
Then again, it's probably more dependent on its star than the others. If Jolie decided not to sign on, the studio could have some big horns to fill.
Good thing I asked Angelina Jolie if she'd ever make a MALEFICENT 2 http://t.co/swE4V9J6aH via @usatodaylife— Andrea Mandell (@AndreaMandell) June 16, 2015
What does Angelina Jolie think about 'Maleficent 2'?
Rumors are officially swirling all over Hollywood about a Maleficent sequel. The Wrap says screenwriter Linda Woolverton is in talks to return to write the screenplay “with the expectation that Angelina Jolie will reprise the title role in the live-action fairy tale, though she does not have a deal in place.” Variety is trumpeting the same news, noting the Sleeping Beauty reboot made over $750 million worldwide.
But Deadline reminds that Angie “developed but didn’t star in sequels to either Salt or Wanted but Disney is moving forward and hoping it gets a fairy tale ending.”
So what does the actual Maleficent think about taking up some dreaded yoga and donning those horns again? We asked her exactly that when the original came out. Here’s what she had to say:
“Possibly,” she told us. “I don’t know. I enjoyed it. I just feel like we did this one thoroughly and I don’t think there’d be another. I feel like this is the one, if I was going to ever do a Disney one, this is the one I wanted to do. And I think we’ve done it well.”
COOL NEWS: MALEFICENT sequel in the works at Disney with ANGELINA JOLIE expected to return... http://t.co/5dHToiY0Ed— Jeff Sneider (@TheInSneider) June 15, 2015
Linda Woolverton, who wrote last year’s hit live-action fairy tale, is in talks to return for the follow-up
Disney is ramping up development of a “Maleficent” sequel, as Linda Woolverton is in talks to return to write the screenplay, an individual familiar with the project has told TheWrap.
Woolverton will write the script with the expectation that Angelina Jolie will reprise the title role in the live-action fairy tale, though she does not have a deal in place.
Joe Roth will return to produce the “Maleficent” sequel, though director Robert Stromberg is not expected to return.
Jolie is notoriously fickle when it comes to live-action sequels, preferring to focus her creative energy on original movies as both an actress and a filmmaker. Sony and Universal once planned sequels to “Salt” and “Wanted,” respectively, but Jolie hasn’t been keen on returning for either would-be franchise after the “Tomb Raider” sequel she starred in left a sour taste.
“Maleficent” grossed $760 million worldwide, making the sequel a high priority for Disney’s development team. At the moment, Jolie is in post-production on Universal’s “By the Sea,” in which she stars opposite real-life husband Brad Pitt.
‘Maleficent’ Sequel On Disney Drawing Board As Linda Woolverton Makes Scripting Deal http://t.co/WkhS9Tzo3v— Deadline Hollywood (@Deadline) June 15, 2015
EXCLUSIVE: Disney has begun moving toward a sequel to Maleficent, the 2014 blockbuster fairy tale that starred Angelina Jolie as the winged title character. The studio has engaged Linda Woolverton to write the sequel, and I’m told the studio is keeping Jolie in the loop and that the sequel will be written for her to reprise.
That will be a whole different conversation, of course, and they would have to make a new deal with her to reprise. She developed but didn’t star in sequels to either Salt or Wanted but Disney is moving forward and hoping it gets a fairy tale ending. Joe Roth is back as the film’s producer, and it’s unclear whether Robert Stromberg will be back. He’s the Oscar winning production designer who made his directing debut. Not surprising that another Maleficent would be a major priority for the studio’s revisionist fairy tale slate. It was a pricey film at a reported $180 million, but Maleficent grossed nearly $760 million worldwide. Woolverton is repped by WME.