Bella Heathcote, Lily James, and Margot Robbie Testing for CINDERELLA Lead; Richard Madden Shortlisted for Prince Role

     April 3, 2013

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Disney is closing in on its titular female lead for Cinderella.  The project suffered a bit of a hiccup when director Mark Romanek exited the film this past January over creative differences.  Kenneth Branagh subsequently stepped in to take the helm, only to see Emma Watson come and go from the lead role in the span of a week.  Cate Blanchett is still set to star as the wicked stepmother, and now Branagh has narrowed down the lead to three actresses.  Hit the jump to find out who’s testing for the lead role and which Game of Thrones actor is being eyed to play the Prince.

Per Deadline, Bella Heathcote (Dark Shadows), Margot Robbie (Pan Am), and Lily James (Wrath of the Titans, Downton Abbey) will be testing for the role of Cinderella in London this week, and one will walk away with the part.  This list is a bit different than the one Romanek had drawn up for his iteration of the film, as Saoirse Ronan, Gabriella Wilde, and Alicia Vikander were previously being eyed for the lead.  Branagh’s list skews a bit older, as Heathcote, Robbie, and James are all in their early-to-mid 20s.

Once the Cinderella role is set, Branagh is expected to move on to casting the film’s male lead.  Though movement on that front has only just gotten underway, Richard Madden is reportedly on the list.  Madden is best known for playing Robb Stark (the King of the North!) on HBO’s immensely popular Game of Thrones and one imagines he would make a fine fit Prince Charming.  Disney is hoping to get cameras rolling on Cinderella this fall in London for a possible 2014 release.

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