Emma Thompson confirmed to play Miss Trunchbull in Netflix's Matilda the Musical

Emma Thompson confirmed to play Miss Trunchbull in Netflix's Matilda the Musical

01/15/2021

Netflix’s Matilda movie has found its Miss Trunchbull in the form of Emma Thompson.

It has been confirmed that Dame Emma, 61, will play children’s literature’s most terrifying principal in the adaptation of the award-winning musical Matilda.

Ralph Fiennes was reportedly attached to the film last summer to play hammer thrower turned child-hating principal Agatha Trunchbull, after Bertie Carvel played the character on the West End and Broadway.

However, production has had a rethink and has cast a woman in the role.

Director Matthew Warchus, who is currently the artistic director at the Old Vic, told the Daily Mail: ‘We haven’t had to build the appearance of Trunchbull as a woman before!’

While Trunchbull has been played by a man on stage in Matilda the Musical, Pam Ferris famously played the character in the 1996 film starring Danny DeVito and Mara Wilson.

While the movie was not a big hit when it was released, it has become a much-loved children’s classic.

Let’s see if Emma also throws a child out a window by her pigtails…

Meanwhile, it has also been confirmed that 11-year-old Alisha Weir will play the title character in the eagerly anticipated adaptation.

The Dublin-based actress is a relative newcomer, having starred in Irish drama Darklands and indie horror Don’t Leave Home previously.

Emma and Alisha will be joined by Lashana Lynch, who will play sweet-natured teacher Miss Honey in the film.

In a statement, Warchus said: ‘Matilda will be an imaginative and fresh retelling of the award-winning musical, Matilda, featuring talented young newcomers, alongside established stars.

‘I look forward to introducing this beloved and powerful story to a new generation of fans around the world.’

The film is expected to feature an extended cast of over 200 children, with filming expected to begin in April.

Based on the 1998 Roald Dahl book, Matilda the Musical was adapted by Dennis Kelly and directed by Warchus, with music and lyrics by Tim Minchin.

It made its West End debut in 2011 after a run in Stratford and won seven Olivier Awards including best new musical, holding the record for most Olivier awards won by a musical, tied with Hamilton.

It also won five Tony awards following its transfer to Broadway in 2013.

Matilda tells the story of a five-year-old girl with a love of reading, who discovers she has telekinetic powers as she deals with her cruel parents and her terrifying principal at her new school.

Matilda will be distributed worldwide by Netflix, but will be distributed theatrically in the UK by TriStar Pictures.

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