Downton Abbey’s Lily James to play Disney’s Cinderella

The 24-year-old actress will be swapping flapper dresses and jazz for a role in the fairytale

Lily James, the actress who plays feisty flapper Lady Rose in Downton Abbey, is set to play Cinderella in Disney’s live action remake of the classic fairytale.


James, who caused something of a scandal at the end of the period drama’s third series when she donned a flapper dress, danced in a jazz club and embarked on an affair with a married man, will be swapping the high-class dining rooms and sumptous bedrooms of Julian Fellowes’ Downton Abbey for a less luxourious lifestyle as downtrodden orphan Cinderella.

The 24-year-old actress, who’s also appeared in Fast Girls, Wrath of the Titans and Secret Diary of a Call Girl, will be acting alongside Cate Blanchett, who is taking up the role of the evil stepmother.

The casting news was announced by Disney on their official Twitter feed last night:

Disney’s new Cinderella adaptation will be directed by Kenneth Branagh and is expected to be inspired by Tim Burton’s 2010 live action remake of Alice in Wonderland.


The film will be the second time Disney have tackled the fable. Their cartoon version of the folk tale was released in 1950 and remains popular to this day.