‘Disenchanted’ cast on how life goes on even in a fairytale

Pictured are (from left) Amy Adams as Giselle, Sofia (played by Mila and Lara Jackson), Gabriella Baldacchino as Morgan Philip, and Patrick Dempsey as Robert Philip in Disney’s live-action ‘Disenchanted.’
Disney Enterprises; Inc.

In Disney+’s new film ‘Disenchanted,’—the sequel to the beloved 2007 film ‘Enchanted’—some new people, songs and settings are introduced along with the characters that audiences fell in love with over a decade ago. 

Directed by Adam Shankman, the sequel takes place ten years after the first movie and finds Amy Adams returning as the sweet and selfless Giselle, Patrick Dempsey back as her New York knight in shining armor, Robert, plus Idina Menzel and James Marsden reprising their roles as Nancy and Prince Edward among others.

James Marsden as Prince Edward and Idina Menzel as Nancy Tremaine in Disney’s live-action ‘Disenchanted.’Jonathan Hession / 2022 Disney Enterprises, Inc.

In this sequel, Giselle and Robert leave the Big Apple to head to a more suburban location, Monroeville, along with the now-teenaged Morgan (Gabriella Baldacchino) and their newborn baby, Sophia. For Giselle, this new start reminds her of her old home in Andalasia and she thinks the new location will bring some changes. And it does…but not the kind she expects. 

For one, Giselle is Morgan’s stepmother, and although her character is known to be sweet as pie, the classic trope of the evil and jealous storybook version of a stepmother makes an appearance through magical ways that won’t be revealed for spoiler purposes in this article.  

At a global press conference, director Adam Shankman stated that this film was “made for Amy.” And to reprise her role, it was fun for the actress to get to see her character in a new light.

“In ‘Enchanted,’ there was an evolution for Giselle from the beginning to the end. I wanted to see where you might take that evolution after 10 years, but keep her grounded in the truth of her current feelings without losing her joy and naivety,” Adams explains. “This takes everything that I loved about her in the first movie and moves her forward. Plus, it was fun to see everyone step back into it.”

Amy Adams as Giselle in ‘Disenchanted.’2022 Disney Enterprises, Inc.

Dempsey also returns, but his character similarly to Giselle also goes through some changes. However, Robert’s version of a role reversal offers a lot more song and dance than he originally had in the first film. 

“Robert at the very beginning is very much the same, although he’s  trying to balance life between his new baby and his other child… And the conflict between the stepmother and that dynamic,” Dempsey explains. “For me, it was a fantastic ride. I had a great time where I could work a little bit, do some sightseeing in Ireland, and work on the musical.”

And how was the singing and dancing bit for the actor?

“It’s nothing I’ve ever done before and it’s an extraordinary feeling when you sing,” he explains. “The vibration is intoxicating and then Adam got me moving too. It was nice to be in the fairy tale world for a while and to play something so broad because I don’t get those kinds of opportunities.”

Patrick Dempsey as Robert Philip in Disney’s live-action ‘Disenchanted.’Alex Bailey / 2022 Disney Enterprises, Inc.

Idina Menzel is no stranger to those opportunities. However, in ‘Enchanted’ we first saw her as the tough city chick with some romantic problems. That all changes by the end of the first film when she meets Marsden’s Prince Edward.

“[My character has a] pretty drastic change from the cynical New York chick who then jumped into a manhole,” she said. “It was challenging figuring out the balance. I was always asking Adam things like, ‘How much of a New York accent do I still have?’ And, ‘How much has this idyllic place rubbed off on me?'”

Throughout the film, we also get to experience new characters. Some of the new additions include Maya Rudolph, Yvette Nicole Brown and Jayma Mays, who are stepping into roles that change throughout the course of the film (which seems to be a theme here in a world where storybooks come to life.) And for the new group, this beloved classic danced into their hearts quite easily.

“We really did [have fun]. We actually did. I mean, to what Patrick said, even though I’ve had a chance to sing in things before, it was nothing like this experience,” explains Rudolph. “And knowing that I was going to get to write this Menken & Schwartz song was really, truly almost like a life fulfillment. Like I was training for the marathon I’d been training for my whole life, and that’s what it was every day.”

Pictured are (from left) Yvette Nicole Brown as Rosaleen, Maya Rudolph as Malvina Monroe, Jayma Mays as Ruby in ‘Disenchanted’.Jonathan Hession / 2022 Disney Enterprises, Inc.

For new audiences ‘Disenchanted’ offers a fun look into a world where your favorite fables come to life, and good conquers evil in the end (and as Dempsey also said in the press conference, with so much darkness in the world we could use some light.) And for fans of the first film, it offers the opportunity to see your favorite characters in an updated version. So, life goes on, even in a fairytale.

Disenchanted‘ will stream exclusively on Disney+ starting Nov. 18. 

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