Why Angelina Jolie’s Daughter Appeared in Maleficent Revealed
Angelina Jolie The Maleficent
The Hollywood practice of transforming villains like “Venom” into anti-heroes extends well beyond the world of comic books, as Disney has been turning to some of its animated adversaries for the same treatment over the last decade or so. Last summer saw Emma Stone consume the screen with her distinctive interpretation of “Cruella” (which is a lot more fun than many people give it credit for), but it was Angelina Jolie as “Maleficent” who started it all.
The 2014 remake took the “Sleeping Beauty” villain in a very different direction than the cartoon version, portraying the mistress of all evil as a sorrowful figure who was wronged by Sharlto Copley’s treacherous King Stefan. The film lacked the spark that would have made it genuinely stand out as a villain story, but Jolie was not one of the factors that worked against it.
Jolie is a superb casting choice because she was almost born to portray this part. Jolie ruled the screen in all of her mischievous beauty when it came time for the “Eternals” actress to reprise the spectacular entrance at tiny Aurora’s christening. The considerable modifications made to the animated picture “Maleficent” saw the eponymous fairy build a stronger bond with Aurora (Elle Fanning) during her childhood, which prompted Jolie to engage with the character when she was still very young. There was only one difficulty.
Bring in the sprout when in doubt.
In an interview with Vanity Fair, Angelina Jolie discusses how her daughter, Vivienne Jolie-Pitt, was picked to portray little Aurora after other children were too terrified to engage with her while she was dressed as “Maleficent”:
“We think it’s entertaining for our kids to make cameo appearances and join us on set, but not to be actors… However, the other three and four-year-old [performers] would not approach me. It had to be a child who liked me and wasn’t scared of my horns, eyes, and claws. Viv had to be it.”
Having Jolie-Pitt engage with her mother actually works for the situation. Maleficent is already acting as a sort of mother figure to Aurora, so the mother-daughter combination having a moment where she isn’t terrified of the horned fairy fits is a hilarious addition. It works especially well given that the three fairies are depicted to be inept parents in this rendition; it seems logical that Aurora would gravitate toward the first person to show even a smidgeon of interest in her.
“Maleficent” is now available on Disney+.