'Maleficent' sequel: Will Angelina Jolie come back?

A sequel is reportedly in the works for the 2014 Disney movie 'Maleficent.' Will a second movie be satisfying creatively and present the audience with a fresh new story?

Frank Connor/Disney/AP
'Maleficent' stars Angelina Jolie.

A sequel to Disney’s hit movie “Maleficent” is reportedly in the works.

“Maleficent” was released in 2014 and starred Angelina Jolie as the villain from the “Sleeping Beauty” fairy tale. The movie co-starred Elle Fanning, Imelda Staunton, and Sharlto Copley and served as an origin story for Maleficent, framing the narrative to explain her actions as a vengeful fairy who casts an evil spell on Sleeping Beauty.

The movie was a box office hit, becoming the eighth-highest-grossing movie of the year, according to the website Box Office Mojo, and according to Deadline, a sequel is now in the works. 

According to Deadline, Linda Woolverton, who wrote the original film, is on board to write the sequel. The big question is, will Jolie return? Many critics praised her performance, with Monitor film critic Peter Rainer writing of the film, “At least Disney was smart enough to cast Jolie. She has a genuinely heroic presence.” Deadline writer Mike Fleming Jr. writes, “I’m told the studio is keeping Jolie in the loop and that the sequel will be written for her to reprise.” 

USA Today asked Jolie back when the first movie came out whether she’d be interested in reprising her role and she replied, “Possibly. 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.” 

A sequel to “Maleficent” was easy to predict. But often, when fairy tales are turned into movies, the fairy tales involved get a new spin. (Yes, the basis of movies like “Maleficent” and an upcoming “Tinkerbell” movie are fairy tales or classic books, but we take what we can get creatively in remake-happy Hollywood.) If Disney announced, for example, that it’s doing a revisionist take on “Aladdin” villain Jafar – something that doesn’t seem impossible after the success of movies like “Maleficent” and “Cinderella” – at least the “Aladdin” story is being rewritten in some way. But a “Maleficent” sequel seems more likely be just that, a sequel, without a fresh take on the story, because a world has already been created in the first film. 

Fans will have to hope that a new “Maleficent” movie would be as satisfying creatively as possible and not just be a retread of a film we’ve already seen.

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