Matilda Movie Musical Cast Finds a Lead

Netflix’s adaptation of the musical version of Matilda has finally found a young star to take on the lead role of a precocious young girl with advanced reading skills and telekinetic abilities who feels like she doesn’t belong in her family of idiotic gamblers and crooks. Relatively unknown 11-year old actress Alisha Weir has landed the role of Matilda, but there’s already been a change with the casting of one of the other key characters, with Emma Thompson taking the role of the nasty headmistress Miss Trunchbull.

The Hollywood Reporter has news on the Matilda movie musical cast finding the little leading lady. Alisha Weir has only a handful of credits to her name, including an independent horror movie called Don’t Leave Home, a TV series called Darklands, and Two by Two: Overboard!, an animated production. But this lead role could turn the actress into a young star.

That’s not the only Matilda movie musical cast update, because there’s been a shift in stars for the key role of Miss Trunchbull. Though Harry Potter franchise star Ralph Fiennes was previously attached to the role, Saving Mr. Banks and Love Actually star Emma Thompson will be taking the role instead. It’s not clear why Fiennes is no longer taking the role, which followed in the stage production’s footsteps of having a man play the role of the heinous headmistress. But Thompson is a fine replacement, even if we’ll miss the chance to see Fiennes singing in drag.

As for the rest of the cast, the only other key cast member confirmed so far is Lashana Lynch as Miss Honey, the sweet teacher who encourages Matilda and has an upsetting history with Miss Trunchbull. We’re still waiting to hear who will play Matilda’s parents and some of her fellow classmates at school.

Matthew Warchus, who directed the original Tony Award-winning stage musical, is also directing the movie. The script comes from Dennis Kelly, and the original music and lyrics by comedian Tim Minchin will also be featured. Warchus said in a statement:

“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.”

It’s not clear when Matilda will arrive on Netflix, but we’ll keep our ear to the ground for more updates.

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