Another Cinderella Movie?: The Best Twists On The Tale

By Hannah Soo Park

We’ve got our eye on another fairytale remake, with today’s news that Cate Blanchett may be lending her signature ice-cold gaze to the part of Cinderella’s evil stepmother in Disney’s upcoming untitled project. According to The Wrap, the “Hobbit” star is the first in talks to join Mark Romanek’s live-action rendition on the classic tale.

Before you roll your eyes at the thought of yet another take on happily ever after, consider the plot, which follows a doomed politically arranged marriage plot involving a prince and, of course, Cinderella. With Blanchett and Romanek on board, we’re thinking this one won’t involve pumpkin carriages and talking mice.

With that said, this won’t be the first twist added to the preexisting cookie-cutter storyline—from the Muppets to gender role reversals, we break down some of the most unexpected and wacky twists we’ve seen in Cinderella’s movie past.

Cinderfella (1960)
Director: Frank Tashlin
Cast: Jerry Lewis, Ed Wynn, Judith Anderson, Anna Maria Alberghetti
The Twist: A gender swap shakes up the typical lineup of characters, with Lewis playing Cinderfella—who also goes by Fella—a down-in-the-dumps orphan who decides to court Princess Charmein in the pursuit of his happily ever after. Meanwhile, his evil stepmother and stepbrothers Maximilian and Rupert plot to thwart his plan.

Cinderella Meets Fella (1938)
Director: Tex Avery
Cast: Voices by Mel Bianc, Bernice Hansen, Danny Webb
The Twist: One of many animated versions, “Cinderella Meets Fella” happens to make our list because of its priceless and random plotline–one that involves Cinderella calling the police when her fairy Godmother is late (she later ends up finding her sitting in a bar.) Oh, and did we mention that Cinderella ends up meeting Prince Charming Egghead?

Hey, Cinderella! (1969)
Director: Jim Henson
Cast: Belinda Montgomery, Robin Ward, Joyce Gordon, Pat Galloway
The Twist: Okay, we know the plot isn’t exactly original, but it’s always worth mentioning when you throw Muppets into the equation. Kermit makes his first appearance as a frog in this goofy comedic TV movie, directed by Henson himself.

Ella Enchanted (2004)
Director: Tommy O’Haver
Cast: Anne Hathaway, Hugh Dancy, Cary Elwes, Steve Coogan, Aidan Mcardle, Minnie Driver, Vivica A. Fox
The Twist: “Ella Enchanted” may involve the usual suspects—a fairy godmother and Prince Charming—but hear us out on this one. Hathaway plays a sassy Ella, who pretty much takes matters into her own hands and goes on a quest to free herself from her “gift” of obedience. Along the way, she fights ogres and giants, and pretty much saves her prince from a giant snake.

Working Girl (1988)
Director: Mike Nichols
Cast: Melanie Griffith, Harrison Ford, Sigourney Weaver, Alec Baldin, Joan Cusack, Philip Bosco, Nora Dunn
The Twist: Melanie Griffith takes the leading role in this modern-day adaptation, set in the male-dominated cutthroat ’80s workforce. The best part? This Cinderella is a self-made, ambitious and opportunistic Cinderella, who strives to get ahead and reach the top of the corporate ladder—a long way from scrubbing floors and singing with birds.

Ever After (1998)
Director: Andy Tennant
Cast: Drew Barrymore, Anjelica Huston, Dougray Scott, Megan Dodds, Melanie Lynskey
The Twist: A portrayal rooted in reality rather than the magic and fairytale element tied to the classic Cinderella tale. Plus, the story’s plot involves a piece of historical fiction in the form of Leonardo da Vinci, who spews off words of wisdom to the distressed Danielle de Barbarac.