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Maleficent is a character from the film Sleeping Beauty (1959).

History[]

Film[]

Maleficent is a dark faery who lived on the outskirts of an unidentified French kingdom in the 1200s-1300s. She was a powerful magic-user who ruled over many monstrous creatures from her castle in the Forbidden Mountain. By her side was her beloved bet raven and confidant, "Diablo" along with a magical staff which she used to channel her powers. Maleficent had the reputation of being, "The Mistress of All Evil", a moniker gained from evil deeds which she seemingly acted upon out of a sadistic love for misery and discord rather than pragmatism.

When one King Stephan had a baby girl named Princess Aurora, Maleficent was not invited to her christening for fairly obvious reasons. Seeing an opportunity for chaos, Maleficent crashed the celebration and cursed Aurora to die on her 16th birthday. Following this, the good fairy Merriweather used her magic to reduce the curse so that she would only fall asleep until being awoken by true-love's first kiss. The baby was then given the fake name of, "Briar Rose" and was sent to live with the three good fairies Flora, Fauna and Merriweather while disguised as peasants until the curse had passed.

Maleficent and her goons spent the following 16 years searching for the baby, a search elongated by her henchmen being incompetent. On the 16th year of searching, Diablo managed to find the baby by tracking the magic of the good fairies leading to Maleficent luring the girl away to be cast into her slumber. Following this, Maleficent kidnapped Aurora's lover Prince Philip to be imprisoned and tortured in her castle until his old age at which point she would release him to go wake Aurora as a decrepit old man.

Philip was later freed by the good fairies who aided in his escape and turned Diablo to stone. Out of wrath, Maleficent used magic to surround Aurora's palace in fire and a forest of thorns before calling upon all the powers of Hell to transform into a giant fire-breathing dragon. A fight ensued between Maleficent and Philip which ended with him throwing an enchanted sword through her heart and dodging her jaws, casting her into a pit of fire and thorns where she met her death.

Disney Parks[]

Maleficent is a dark faery who lived on the outskirts of an unidentified French kingdom in the 1200s-1300s. She was a powerful magic-user who ruled over many monstrous creatures from her castle in the Forbidden Mountain. By her side was her beloved bet raven and confidant, "Diablo" along with a magical staff which she used to channel her powers. Maleficent had the reputation of being, "The Mistress of All Evil", a moniker gained from evil deeds which she seemingly acted upon out of a sadistic love for misery and discord rather than pragmatism.

When one King Stephan had a baby girl named Princess Aurora, Maleficent was not invited to her christening for fairly obvious reasons. Seeing an opportunity for chaos, Maleficent crashed the celebration and cursed Aurora to die on her 16th birthday. Following this, the good fairy Merriweather used her magic to reduce the curse so that she would only fall asleep until being awoken by true-love's first kiss. The baby was then given the fake name of, "Briar Rose" and was sent to live with the three good fairies Flora, Fauna and Merriweather while disguised as peasants until the curse had passed.

Maleficent and her goons spent the following 16 years searching for the baby, a search elongated by her henchmen being incompetent. On the 16th year of searching, Diablo managed to find the baby by tracking the magic of the good fairies leading to Maleficent luring the girl away to be cast into her slumber. Following this, Maleficent kidnapped Aurora's lover Prince Philip to be imprisoned and tortured in her castle until his old age at which point she would release him to go wake Aurora as a decrepit old man.

Philip was later freed by the good fairies who aided in his escape and turned Diablo to stone. Out of wrath, Maleficent used magic to surround Aurora's palace in fire and a forest of thorns before calling upon all the powers of Hell to transform into a giant fire-breathing dragon. A fight ensued between Maleficent and Philip which ended with him throwing an enchanted sword through her heart and dodging her jaws, casting her into a pit of fire and thorns where she met her death.

Maleficent's spirit survived however and became a shadowy phantom which inhabited the caverns of Aurora and Philip's castle. Maleficent might have been succeeded by a new Mistress of Evil who would have been a demonic entity and/or sorceress that would have been captured by and/or enemies of the Museum of the Weird in New Orleans during the 19th century. It is likely that this Mistress of the Weird would have been subdued by one Madame Vidalia Onionski Zarkov, an affiliate of the Society of Explorers and Adventurers and later senior member of its splinter-faction the Adventurers Club.

At some point after 1928, Maleficent's spirit was amongst the many villains summoned by the sorceress Queen Grimhilde (better known simply as, "The Evil Queen") through the usage of her Magic Mirror. The evil queen called forth these forces of evil as a means of materializing within the dreams of SEA-affiliate Mickey Mouse to destroy him from within via a, "Nightmare Fantasmic". When fellow villains Ursula, Dr. Facilier, Chernabog, Hades and Jafar failed to destroy the rodent, Maleficent used her powers to transform into her dragon form and nearly killed Mickey with her fire-breath. However, Mickey managed to materialized the Sword in the Stone of Arthurian myth which he used to kill Maleficent's dream form, resulting in the evil queen's forces being dematerialized and Maleficent's spirit being apparently vanished to the underworld.

In a later incident, Maleficent's spirit was resurrected by the God of the Underworld, Hades through the use of a, "Get Out of the Underworld Free Card". This occurred in a scheme to have her steal a fragment of the Crystal of the Magic Kingdom so that they could conquer the several realms which composed the kingdom. Maleficent however planned to betray Hades by stealing the crystal shard for herself only to be defeated by the joined forces of the good fairies and several sorcerer apprentices to the wizard Merlin. It is unknown if Maleficent's soul once again managed to evade death in limbo after this demise.

Appearances and allusions[]

Cinderella Castle Mystery Tour[]

Maleficent served as the logo for this attraction both in her fae and dragon form. In the first scene of the show, a portrait of Princess Aurora was transformed into portrait depicting Maleficent by the Magic Mirror. Later, guests enter the domain of Maleficent where she attacks them and they make a narrow escape.

Fantasmic![]

Maleficent is one of the villains summoned by the Evil Queen to invade the dreams of Mickey Mouse in this attraction. She appears in the climax as a giant, fire-breathing dragon only to be killed by Mickey using the sword in the stone.

Maharajah Jungle Trek[]

There is a comic-strip illustration of Maleficent seen on an Anandapur newspaper used as roofing in this attraction.

Skipper Canteen[]

A dragon modelled after Maleficent's dragon form appears on a map in the Skipper Canteen depicting, "Legendary flying beasts of the Mekong river and surrounding territories". Said map is created by Jason Chandler and Captain Brieux of the Hyperion Airship and depicts her in northern India.[2]

Sleeping Beauty Castle[]

Sleeping Beauty Castle Walkthrough[]

Maleficent reprises her role from the film in this attraction. However, at the end of the attraction she appears as a disembodied shadow while laughing, inferring to have used magic to escape being fully killed.

La Tanière du Dragon[]

Maleficent does not directly appear in this attraction but is rather indirectly alluded to. In the backstory for this Disneyland Paris attraction, Merlin adopted a male fire-breathing dragon which he found as an egg and kept in a cavern underneath of Sleeping Beauty's castle. A popular theory/assumption made about this attraction is that the dragon is in some way connected to Maleficent, potentially being her offspring. The sign for this attraction is made to resemble the horns of Maleficent as a further allusion to her.

Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom[]

In this attraction, Maleficent is resurrected by the Greek god of the underworld, Hades via a, "Get Out of the Underworld Free" card. Hades has her assist him in stealing a shard of the Crystal of the Magic Kingdom so that he can take over the different realms of the kingdom, only for Maleficent to plot behind his back. Maleficent attempts to use the crystal shard to conquer Fantasyland only to be defeated by the apprentices of the sorcerer Merlin and killed once again.

World of Disney[]

An illustration of Maleficent is etched into an old animator's table in this shop. The shop is themed to being built from an old Disney animation studio in the town of Disney Springs, Florida with the table's owner being inferred to be one Marc Davis.[3]

Connections[]

Discovery Bay[]

Jason Chandler who documented Maleficent's dragon form in the Mekong is a character coming from the proposed Discovery Bay expansion of Disneyland. Captain Brieux and the Hyperion were also to be featured in this expansion.

Disney films[]

  • Tangled: Maleficent's spinning-wheel appears in the possession of the witch Mother Gothel in this film. In the seemingly canonical Tangled: The Series, this same spinning wheel appears in the Spiral Vault of magical objects alongside the hat of Yen Sid, Sword in the Stone, Evil Queen's heart box and the Black Cauldron.

Expedition Everest[]

The kingdom of Anandapur which printed a comic-strip of Maleficent is the setting of Expedition Everest. Incidentally, Maleficent's lair, "The Forbidden Mountain" shares its name with the fictional mountain setting of Expedition Everest.

Museum of the Weird[]

This attraction was to feature a character based on Maleficent who was a magical woman known as, "The Mistress of Evil". This character was later recycled into Disney Kingdoms as the main-antagonist of Seekers of the Weird, Despoina. It is unknown if since the museum's retconning into Society of Explorers and Adventurers/Adventurers Club cannon the Mistress of Evil still exists nor if she bares any story connection to Maleficent.

Trivia[]

  • Maleficent's voice-actress Eleanor Audley also is the voice-actress behind Madame Leota in the Haunted Mansion.
  • Due to the proximity between the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror and Fantasmic!, Tower of Terror merchandise and promotional-materials will often feature Maleficent alongside or within the Hollywood Tower Hotel.
  • Maleficent's illustration was originally not coloured but later coloured bronze as opposed to her iconic black scales.[4]

References[]

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