Sam Riley Talks Working With Angelina Jolie, on Disney’s Maleficent #MaleficentEvent

Sam Riley Interview

It’s always such a fun time to sit down and chat with the stars of a really amazing movie and sitting down with the cast of Maleficent was no different. So far I’ve shared my Angelina, Sharlto, Elle, and Robert interviews. Today, I am sharing with you, the final interview from the #MaleficentEvent press junket. Sam Riley, plays Maleficent’s right hand man…or raven rather in the movie.

Sam Riley In Maleficent

Of course we wanted to know all about his audition and how he found out he got the part of Diaval, Angelina’s sidekick, in the movie!

It was pretty classic. They email you the scenes and you learn them at home….if you’re a good boy. I flew to London and met Rob and the casting director. Then you do the scene and someone reads Angelina’s role. Sometimes you think you’ve done it well and it’s a we’ll call you type of thing.

I didn’t hear anything for quite a long time and about three weeks later my American agent rang, which is always at night in Europe, and he said, “What are you doing?”. I said, “Oh, I’m in a pub.” And he said, “Well, buy yourself another drink because, Angelina saw the tape and you’re Birdman.” So exciting.

I imagine hearing you are going to get to be in a Disney movie AND alongside Angelina Jolie would be exciting. Once he found out he got the role, how did he feel about working on such a classic??

It was really exciting. Most of my films are sort of independent-type cinema, that not many people go and watch usually. They’re all great, obviously. This script was really great. I loved it and the lady who wrote it had written the Lion King as well and lots of other big Disney movies.

I thought the way they did this was really interesting. I mean, what would make a woman or a sorceress curse a little baby? It’s like one of the worst things you could possibly do. The fact that Angelina, obviously, was gonna play Maleficent was very exciting.

Sam 3

I loved watching him sort of become Maleficent’s conscience in the movie. He started off serving her, because he owed her for saving his life, but the role he played in Maleficent’s life is what keeps her sane and grounded. As Diaval, there are times when he is changing from human to animal, which must have meant quite some time in the makeup chair. Exactly how long did it take Sam to become Diaval?

It’s about four hours? Though, I couldn’t really complain because there were other people that had been in there since three o’clock in the morning. So, the ladies and guys that were putting all this stuff on, they have to be there at that time and then the whole day they have to make sure things aren’t falling off. So they have it really tough.

That’s a really long time to sit there and have makeup put on, how in the world did he get through it???

I’m a really good sleeper. I used to be anyway. I’ve just had a baby. Anyway, after a couple of weeks I managed to be able to lie down in the chair and while people were gluing things to my face. I could actually sleep through it, which is pretty impressive. Until one morning they turned the seat back up and realized they stuck my nose on the wrong way, it was sticking up. So they wouldn’t let me sleep anymore after that.


Every actor tends to have a scene they remember more than, so when asked what his most memorable scene was this is what Sam had to say.

The first one really, because I was really nervous. I’d met Angelina before, obviously, we rehearsed and things like that, but I’d never seen her in the full costume. So, they drive you from your little trailer, on a golf buggy. Then they had this amazing set there and she was already stood there, so I was worried that I’d been keeping her waiting or something.

She had her back to me and the way it was all lit, so amazing. Then, when she turned around it was weird because you know it’s not real, the cheekbones and everything and the contact lenses. But when you look at her in all that stuff it kind of natural….maybe that’s not the right word but it fits, you know. You don’t think it looks fake or something. In fact I only really saw her in costume for like the first four weeks of the shooting. You got so used to seeing Maleficent every morning, so it was strange to see her in her normal clothes afterwards.

Please note, this final answer to a question about the movie does have a spoiler, so you if you haven’t seen the movie yet scroll really fast to the bottom for links!

Sam Riley With Mommy Bloggers

In the movie, we find out that it’s not a prince, who delivers true loves kiss, but rather the love of a “mother”, so to speak. We wanted to know what Sam thought about that twist in the story!

I loved that. I thought that was really beautiful. I mean, I’m sure she’s gonna be happy with Prince Charming as well, but I thought that was a beautiful thing. The fact that love is, true love, can be between any type of human being. I thought that was the really charming thing about it.

I could not agree more with Sam on that point. Maleficent takes a classic and sheds a new light on what the untold story was, from Sleeping Beauty’s point of view. A princess did not need a prince to find true love, because really, what truer love is there than that of someone who chooses to be a mother/protector. Watching Sam take on Diaval, and lead Maleficent down a path, she might not otherwise have taken, was such a touching part of this movie!

If you haven’t been to see Maleficent, please take time to go see it. It’s so worth seeing it in theaters, it’s one I am 99.9999% sure you won’t be disappointed in. My family loved it and I am sure yours will too!

The following two tabs change content below.
Toni is a professional lifestyle blogger living on the sunny Florida Gulf Coast. She has a passion for Disney, Travel, Fashion, Cooking, Tech, Family Fun Ideas, Reviews, Giveaways and loves being able to share that with her readers!


  1. 1

    I loved meeting Sam. He was such a sweet guy. His character was my favorite in the movie!

  2. 2

    4 hours of makeup is crazy! Great interview! I can’t wait to see this movie.

  3. 3

    I am not sure my girls are old enough for this movie and I know my husband does not want to be dragged to it. I have a feeling that I will need to wait for it to hit DVD ;/

  4. 4

    Amazing. Great you were part of this.

  5. 5

    He sounds awesome! I can’t wait to see this movie!

  6. 6

    My hubby and oldest saw the movie last week! He said his favorite character was the raven.

  7. 7

    I had never heard of him and he comes from over here,shows how much i know lol.I can not wait to see this movie.

  8. 8

    I’ve never heard of him, but I like that they picked a bunch of not-so-famous people to be in the movie. It makes it more real.

  9. 9

    He was such a great character. He looks just as cute in real life!

  10. 10

    How exciting! It would be amazing to meet Angelina.

  11. 11

    I’ve only heard good things about the movie- I can’t wait to see it!

  12. 12

    So exciting about his audition! I can’t wait to see this movie!

  13. 13

    You got to interview Angelina too!!! I am going to look for that post now!

  14. 14

    Maleficent was such a good movie! I can’t wait to watch it again. Diaval was such a fun character!

  15. 15

    I will have to wait for this movie to come out on DVD. Looks great!!

  16. 16

    I hate that they let Angelina do some of the casting work – it doesn’t seem fair to the producers. Just because she’s a name, you know? I enjoyed Diavol’s character a lot.

  17. 17

    I love how Sam found out he got the part. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ve not seen Malificent yet, but I’m excited to see it soon!

  18. 18

    I have heard so much about this movie and still haven’t seen it. I really need to do that. Loved the interview. What better place to be but sitting in a pub, kicking back and enjoying yourself when you fine out that you got the role of a lifetime!

  19. 19

    I am really excited to see this movie. It did so well over the weekend at the box office and the reviews were great! I haven’t heard of Sam Riley before, but he seems like a nice guy!

  20. 20

    I didn’t realize a lady wrote Lion King. He sounds very interesting, and how cool that you got to be a part of an interview with him!

  21. 21

    Very interesting interview. I think it’s really neat to find out how actors get into character and the research they do the prepare. Thanks for sharing. Can’t wait to go see this.

  22. 22

    Crazy to sit for make up for so long! I want to see this!

  23. 23

    It’s nice that he crossed over into a mainstream movie. What a great way to do it.

  24. 24

    He was great in this movie! And just wonderful in person!

  25. 25

    What a neat interview. I can’t wait to see the film.

  26. 26

    Thanks for sharing this interview. He was great in the move. And he is a real cutie!

  27. 27

    What a fun experience! I can’t wait to see this movie!

  28. 28

    I thought he was excellent in the movie and his character added a lot. Thanks for telling us more about him!

  29. 29

    sounds like a pretty awesome event for the movie premiere!! he seems like such a likeable guy

  30. 30

    He seems like a really down to earth person! What a neat phone call to get!!

  31. 31

    He seems so nice, I’d love to see him in the movie now.

  32. 32

    Very cool! The buzz for this movie is definitely building! He seems like a nice guy.:)

  33. 33

    I haven’t seen this but can’t wait to see it with my oldest!

  34. 34

    I have heard great things about the movie. I cannot wait to watch it. I am curious about his performance

  35. 35

    He did a great job – he really played the part well, and I love his personality in the movie!

  36. 36

    I haven’t seen the movie yet, but planning on it. He is cute and makes a good pairing for Angelina Jolie.

  37. 37

    I know several people who’re waiting to see this. Neat interview! Always fun to find out the behind the scenes scoop!

  38. 38

    I cannot believe all the makeup time he put in. That must be rough. I can’t wait to see this movie. It looks like it’s really good.

  39. 39
    tee mccluskey :

    I have not yet seen this movie but I have heard it is really good!

  40. 40

    This sounds like it was a great interview. I really enjoyed reading this. He sounds like a really down to earth guy. I can’t wait to go see this movie.

  41. 41

    Thanks for sharing the interview with us. I loved this movie. His character was one of my fave

  42. 42

    That’s a lot of makeup! We are going to the movies over the next couple of days….I can’t wait!

  43. 43

    I think it is cool that Sam got the role! I would have bought myself a drink too!!

  44. 44

    That had to be cool seeing Angelina Jolie in the makeup for the first time. I am looking forward to seeing this movie soon.

  45. 45

    I’m so excited about finally seeing this movie! I hope it would come here already, lol

  46. 46

    I’ve never heard of this actor before. I’m eager to see him in the movie now though ๐Ÿ™‚

  47. 47

    Birdman was my favorite character in this movie. So exciting for him! Loved Maleficent too.

  48. 48

    So cool! What an opportunity. I can’t wait to see the movie – hopefully, this weekend. ๐Ÿ™‚

Powered by Lagniappe Custom Development