Fairy Tale Return As Kenneth Branagh Premieres Cinderella in Belfast

Belfast Telegraph, 27 February 2015
By Chris Kilpatrick
Thanks, Jane

He's achieved global acclaim for his work both in front of and behind the cameras.

Now Sir Kenneth Branagh is returning to where it all began to showcase his latest production, Disney's 'Cinderella', at a special preview for Northern Ireland cinema-goers.

The Academy Award and Golden Globe-nominated actor, screenwriter and director will be in the audience for a charity screening of the story that has captivated children for generations.

Sir Kenneth has spoken about his pride in the movie he directed ahead of the preview in his home city of Belfast next month. "I am delighted to be able to come to Belfast to introduce the film before it opens at the end of March," he said.

"Way back in 1989 I brought my first directorial film, 'Henry V', to Belfast and it is always exciting to come home to your home city to show your work.

"I am delighted, too, that this screening will benefit two fantastic charities, NICVA (Northern Ireland Council for Voluntary Action) and Into Film, a film education charity that puts film at the heart of the educational and personal development of children and young people."

Earlier this month Sir Kenneth spoke out to deny rumours that the waist of the film's star, Lily James, has been airbrushed to make it look smaller.

Just as Lord Voldemort's lack of a nose was a trick of video editing, many watching the trailer for the classic fairy tale believed Cinderella's tiny waistline was just too unbelievable to have been James' real figure. But Sir Ken said it was simply down to the tight-fitting corset James was wearing.

"It was not, it was not," Branagh said after accusations the actress had been 'Photoshopped'. "I can't remember anybody during that ball sequence who went up next to her and didn't go: 'Oh my God!' Then they'd look round the other side.

"I was constantly saying: 'You are eating, aren't you Lily? Let's get Lily some soup please'! These gowns were beautifully crafted and they produced shapes that were very extreme. To all the airbrush conspiracy theorists I can answer now: no."

James, best known for playing Lady Rose MacClare in 'Downton Abbey', admitted she did have to "squeeze to within an inch of my life" to put the corset and dress on.

Charity premiere at Movie House Cinemas, Dublin Road, Belfast at 4.30pm, March 22, in aid of NICVA and INTO FILM.
Tickets, 12 for adults, 8 for children (16 and under), family ticket, 35. Tickets only from NICVA. See www.nicva.org/kenneth-branagh-cinderella-premiere

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