I doubt anyone is surprised to hear Disney is moving forward with a sequel to the Angelina Jolie starrer Maleficent, which may have looked like a bit of a risk before its May 2014 release as it carried a budget of $180 million, but after $758+ million worldwide it became quite clear Disney’s live action fairy tales were gold mines. Alice in Wonderland brought in $1+ billion in 2010 and Cinderella tallied $532+ million earlier this year on only a $95 million budget.
In all likelihood I would expect Maleficent 2 to come in under that original $180 million price tag, though I bet Jolie doesn’t come cheap and in order to make a Maleficent sequel you sorta want the star of the original film… right?
Linda Woolverton, who penned the original along with Alice in Wonderland as well as the upcoming Alice Through the Looking Glass, will write the sequel with the intention of keeping Jolie in the loop, expecting her to return as the title character. Jolie has been a bit prickly when it comes to sequels, however, as a sequel to both Salt and Wanted were long discussed, though never came to fruition. To be fair, though, neither of those original films were nearly as successful and Jolie seemed much more involved with Maleficent than either of those two features.
There’s also no word on whether Robert Stromberg will be back to direct. [Deadline]