Game of Thrones Star Richard Madden Cast As Cinderella's Prince Charming
Actor Who Portrays Robb Stark in Hit TV series Will Play Opposite Lily James in Disney's Live-action Version of the Classic Folk Tale

The Guardian, 9 May 2013
By Ben Child

Disney's big budget, live-action take on 'Cinderella' appears to be following in the footsteps of Tim Burton's $1bn 'Alice in Wonderland' fantasy as director Kenneth Branagh puts together a mostly British cast. With 'Downton Abbey''s Lily James already cast in the title role, the Hollywood Reporter has revealed that 'Game of Thrones'' Richard Madden will play her prince.

Madden, who plays Robb Stark in the highly-rated HBO fantasy series, will take the role which, as tradition demanded, was named Prince Charming in the 1950 Disney animated version of the tale. Cate Blanchett has been cast as the wicked stepmother.

The film is the latest in a series of live action Disney fantasies that began in 2010 with the enormous box office success of Tim Burton's 'Alice in Wonderland'. That film also featured a mostly British supporting cast, including Helena Bonham Carter, Stephen Fry, Christopher Lee, Alan Rickman, Matt Lucas and Timothy Spall. The studio continued its run of box office success with another fantasy, Sam Raimi's 'Oz the Great and Powerful', last month, and has cast Angelina Jolie as Sleeping Beauty's evil stepmother in 2014's similarly pitched 'Maleficent'.

Madden's previous film experience includes the poorly-received Hideo Nataka thriller 'Chatroom' in 2010. However, he has won rave reviews for his performance as Stark, the young King in the North, in the hugely successful 'Game of Thrones', based on George RR Martin's 'A Song of Fire and Ice' novels about a fictional fantasy world.

The initial draft of the script for 'Cinderella', which Disney hopes to release in 2014, was written by Aline Brosh McKenna. Producer Simon Kinberg told the LA Times that he and McKenna, who also wrote 'The Devil Wears Prada', conceived the idea of a live action take together.

"We were thinking of titles and characters that we hadn't really seen done in a modern, live-action way, and we were kind of stunned that 'Cinderella' hasn't really been done that way, as a traditional, loyal telling of the story," said Kinberg. "She's a great, iconic character, a character that I loved when I was a kid, and I loved the Disney animated movie.

"It's a funny thing, [be]cause her name a little bit like Sherlock Holmes, or Star Wars, or these other franchises it's one of those names that people all around the world know and intrinsically know the story," added Kinberg. "It's just an identifiable, very rootable underdog story."

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