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Faces & names: ‘Cinderella’ peek offers Blanchett as evil stepmother

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Walt Disney Studios is betting that new generations will embrace a lavish, live-action version of its animated classic “Cinderella,” teasing theater owners with new footage from the upcoming film at CinemaCon on Wednesday.

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Unlike “Maleficent,” featuring Angelina Jolie as the evil queen in a new spin on “Sleeping Beauty,” “Cinderella’s” big selling point isn’t special effects. It’s the ball gowns.

The footage depicted a young Cinderella, played by Lily James (“Downton Abbey”), collapsing after receiving news of her father’s death. She then meets her prince while riding spiritedly through a forest, followed by a glimpse of her mother’s ballgown ripped apart by her step-family. But then Cinderella appears in a dazzling blue ball gown that no doubt has the company’s Princess merchandising line preparing for pint-sized mass production.

Freshly-minted Oscar winner Cate Blanchett portrays the villainous stepmother.

“Cinderella” hits theaters in 2015.

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