Iconic R&B singer and actress Brandy is returning to the role of Cinderella in a new Disney+ original movie in the Descendants world called The Pocketwatch.
Not only is Brandy returning as Cinderella, but she'll be joined by Rita Ora as the "withholding, tyrannical" Queen of Hearts, who rules over Wonderland with an iron fist.
When Brandy played the role in the 1997 television version of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella, she became the first Black actress to play the role. She was instantly iconic, and the movie has become a beloved staple for millions of fans around the globe.
According to Disney+, The Pocketwatch returns to the lands of Auradon and the Isle of the Lost, where the preteen and teen progeny of iconic Disney characters live in the Descendants movies. It will also take "audiences through the rabbit hole to the hostile unincorporated territory of Wonderland, a magical, mysterious place made famous in Alice in Wonderland."
The new movie follows "polar opposites" Red and Chloe as they cross paths when chaos breaks out at an Auradon celebration. "In order to prevent an impending coup, they must join forces to travel back in time, via a magical pocket watch created by the Mad Hatter's son, to stop an event that would lead to grave consequences."
In the cast breakdown, it's revealed that Ruby Rose Turner will be playing Bridget, a young version of Ora's Queen of Hearts who is "sweet-natured, bubbly, generous, and the complete opposite of her grown-up self." Morgan Dudley is playing Ella, a.k.a. Young Brandy's Cinderella, "who is blunt, pragmatic, and has a bit of a chip on her shoulder about being forced to work for her wicked stepmother.
Other cast members include China Anne McClain returning to the franchise as Uma, the daughter of Ursula the Sea Witch, Kylie Cantrall as Red, the "rebellious 16-year-old daughter of the Queen of Hearts who "knows she'll never get the Queen's approval, so she finds ways to provoke her mother and stir up trouble," and Malia Baker as Chloe, the daughter of Cinderella and Prince Charming, "who is book smart and athletic, but her privilege makes her somewhat naive about the real world."
High School Musical: The Musical: The Series star Dara Renee is playing Ulyana, the younger, mean girl bully sister of Ursula, Joshua Colley is playing Hook, one of Ulyana's sycophants, and Malanie Paxson is returning as Fairy Godmother, whom she played in the first two Descendants movies.
While the original Descendants movies don't have any actual queerness, the ship between Evie and Mal, the daughters of the Evil Queen and Maleficent, was one of the most popular Disney femslash pairings in recent years. Dove Cameron, who played Mal, said that she played Mal, like all her characters, as queer.