‘Ella Enchanted’: Anne Hathaway Initially Refused to Sing Because She Thought it Would be ‘Cheesy’

Anne Hathaway has a face that is recognizable to many people. She has been seen in many movies throughout the years, including Dark Waters, Don Jon, The Devil Wears Prada, and Passengers, as well as several appearances on TV shows. She is a very versatile actress that can on a variety of film types from fairy tales to adult drama and comedies.

Oddly enough, one of the most significant parts of the movie is one that Hathaway didn’t want to do. She didn’t want to sing.

The magic behind ‘Ella Enchanted’

Ella Enchanted is a movie that combines fairy tales with modern humor. When Ella is a baby, she is visited by her fairy godmother, Lucinda (played by Vivica A. Fox). Her enchantment requires her to do as she is told. What may have been designed to mean well, ends up being a curse after Ella’s mother dies, and she is sent to live with the harsh Dame Olga (played by Joanne Lumley). It is a twist of fate that leads Ella to seek her fairy godmother in the hopes of getting her to break the spell. Her traveling partner is none other than Prince Charmont (Hugh Dancy) who ultimately wins the fair maiden’s heart.

Ella Enchanted achieved success from both critics and audiences. Not just for the appeal of the captivating story, but for the soundtrack that almost didn’t make it to the big screen. Particularly the songs Don’t Go Breakin’ My Heart(duet with Jesse McCartney), You Make Me Feel Like Dancing, and Somebody to Love. The three songs that Hathaway herself sang during the movie.

The beauty of Anne Hathaway’s songs

Anne Hathaway
Anne Hathaway | Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Hathaway’s songs in the movie are all upbeat and fun to listen to.  This makes it surprising to learn that she really hated the idea of being the one to sing them. However, it isn’t that she dislikes singing. She was concerned about how people would view it if she sang.

She reportedly told LiveAbout.com why she at first refused to do it saying, “I love singing, and it’s something that I really enjoy doing, but I didn’t want it to appear obnoxious in the film. There have been times when I’ve seen actors do it, where all of a sudden, the character has nothing to do with having a good voice, and they bust out this Aretha Franklin-style vocals against full orchestration. I’m like, “Come on, that’s completely cheesy and unbelievable.”

She didn’t want to be amid those that she would view as cheesy, but fans are truly happy that she did. However, with her strong opinion of why she wouldn’t sing, we have to wonder what changed her mind?

This is a little more complicated, but simply put, the right song was found. The catch is, Hathaway felt that it should be sung as Ella, tentative at first and then growing stronger.

After Ella Enchanted: pure magic for Hathaway

Few actresses would be able to follow in Hathaway’s footsteps. She has starred in many movies and television shows for all age groups.

Less than a year after Ella Enchanted, the fairy tale, she won an Oscar for the movie Les Misérables. In Les Misérables, Fantine (Hathaway) is the mother of Cosette, and they are trying to make it in early 19th century France. It tells the story of Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman), a man who broke parole and was being hunted by ruthless policemen. He agrees to care for Hathaway’s daughter after Hathaway dies.

Hathaway’s part is small, at only 15 minutes total, but nonetheless significant. One of the most notable parts she played was singing I Dreamed a Scene.

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