Belfast Telegraph

Lily James dazzles at Cinderella bash, but hits back at storm over her waist

By Staff Reporter

Cinderella star Lily James dismissed controversy over her tiny waist to go to the ball last night.

The Downton Abbey actress dazzled on the red carpet as she attended the London premiere of the fairytale film directed by Belfast's Sir Kenneth Branagh.

The 25-year-old blonde beauty looked stunning, making the most of her slim frame and cleavage in a sparkling silver corset gown as she posed for photographers. While she looked every inch the princess in Leicester Square, Lily's dark eye make-up gave her an edgy appearance.

"This is my home and it feels like the most special one. It's amazing. All my friends and family are here. And to see my face everywhere - it's so surreal," she said. Lily said the film, which was shot at Pinewood studios and on location including at the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich and Windsor, had taken two years of her life.

But she is delighted she will be reunited this autumn with Branagh and her prince, Richard Madden, for a new stage production of Romeo And Juliet in London.

"When Cinderella's over I'm going to feel really lost so I'm glad we're keeping the dream alive a bit," she said.

Lily took the opportunity to speak out about the criticism the film has received for appearing to manipulate her waist to an eye-wateringly tiny size. "Why on earth are we focusing on something so irrelevant?" she said, adding that the film's morals should be more important. Branagh agreed: "In this version I think the message is very positive. She is empowered, good, thoughtful, strong.

"She asks questions about why her step-family are so cruel. And she's really mature in the face of this mistreatment. She's neither frail nor unsophisticated, and in Lily James' performance she's also funny and beautiful."

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