Watchworthy
422 voters

The Greatest Live Action Fairy Tale Movies

Updated February 3, 2020 5.2k votes 422 voters 9.5k views41 items

Classic fairy tales can go from the page to the screen, as if by magic. First, the animated films of Disney inspired audiences to follow their dreams and believe in fairy godmothers. More recently, a number of studios have put live-action spins on these timeless stories. The best live action fairy tale movies feature beloved literary characters played by talented actors and actresses, and magical obstacles that can only be surmounted by true love and pure hearts. This is a list of the top live fairy tale movies including everything from The Princess Bride to Oz the Great and Powerful to Cinderella.

What films will you find on this list of the best live action fairy tales movies? In Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, Mia Wasikowska played the courageous lead, but it was Johnny Depp's Mad Hatter that stole every scene. Helena Bonham Carter also won over audiences with her wonderfully wicked spin on the Red Queen. Penelope is another great live action fairy tale film full of imagination and creativity. The lives of multiple fairy tale characters collide in the 2014 adaptation of the hit musical Into the Woods. Other enchanting movies found on this list include Beauty and the Beast, Red Riding Hood, and Finding Neverland.

It's up to you to decide which fairy tale film deserves the top spot on this list. Vote your personal picks towards number one, and please add any magical movies that are missing.

Photo:
...more
  • 1
    Beauty and the Beast
    252
    68

    Beauty and the Beast

    Dan Stevens, Luke Evans

    Released2017

  • 2
    Cinderella
    107
    24

    Cinderella

    Julie Andrews, Edie Adams

    Released1957

    Directed byRalph Nelson

    Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella is a musical written for television, with music by... more on Wikipedia
  • 3
    Snow White
    98
    21

    Snow White

    Diana Rigg, Nicola Stapleton

    Released1987

    Directed byMichael Berz

    Snow White is a 1987 American musical/fantasy film based on the classic fairytale and released... more on Wikipedia
  • 4
    102
    25

    Tales From Muppetland: The Frog Prince

    Trudy Young, Jim Henson

    Released1971

    Directed byJim Henson

    Enchanted by an evil witch, a beautiful princess is forced to speak only in nonsense phrases....
  • 5
    98
    22

    Hey, Cinderella!

    Jim Henson, Frank Oz

    Released1969

    Directed byJim Henson

    Hey, Cinderella! is a television special adaptation of Cinderella featuring The Muppets.... more on Wikipedia
  • 6
    Cinderella
    108
    29

    Cinderella

    Ginger Rogers, Lesley Ann Warren

    Released1965

    Directed byCharles S. Dubin

    Cinderella is a 1965 musical fantasy film written by Joseph Schrank and directed by Charles S....
  • 7
    Enchanted
    135
    66

    Enchanted

    Amy Adams, Susan Sarandon

    Released2007

    Directed byKevin Lima

    Enchanted is a 2007 American musical live-action/animated fantasy romantic comedy film,... more on Wikipedia

    More Enchanted 

    #119 of 572 The Best Animated Films Ever#470 of 926 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films

  • 8
    Peter Pan
    74
    26

    Peter Pan

    Jason Isaacs, Saffron Burrows

    Released2003

    Directed byP. J. Hogan

    Peter Pan is a 2003 Australian-American-British fantasy film released by Universal Pictures,... more on Wikipedia
  • 9
    Cinderella
    149
    99

    Cinderella

    Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter

    Released2015

    Directed byKenneth Branagh

    Cinderella is a 2015 American romantic fantasy film directed by Kenneth Branagh, from a... more on Wikipedia

    More Cinderella 

    #48 of 97 The Best Disney Live-Action Movies#295 of 356 The Best Musical Movies Of All Time

  • 10
    Mirror Mirror
    62
    33

    Mirror Mirror

    Julia Roberts, Lily Collins

    Released2012

    Directed byTarsem Singh

    Mirror Mirror is a 2012 American comedy fantasy film based on the fairy tale "Snow White"... more on Wikipedia

    More Mirror Mirror 

    #100 of 200 The Best Teen Romance Movies#43 of 50 The Best Movies With Elves

  • 11
    Snow White and the Huntsman
    74
    46

    Snow White and the Huntsman

    Charlize Theron, Kristen Stewart

    Released2012

    Directed byRupert Sanders

    Snow White and the Huntsman is a 2012 American dark fantasy action film based on the German... more on Wikipedia

    More Snow White and the Huntsman 

    #106 of 121 The Greatest Directorial Debuts Of All Time#451 of 557 The Greatest Film Scores of All Time

  • 12
    The Princess Bride
    130
    102

    The Princess Bride

    Billy Crystal, Robin Wright

    Released1987

    Directed byRob Reiner

    The Princess Bride is a 1987 American romantic comedy fantasy adventure film directed and... more on Wikipedia

    More The Princess Bride 

    Behind-The-Scenes Stories About André The Giant In ‘The Princess Bride’Small But Poignant Details Fans Noticed In 'The Princess Bride'

  • 13
    Pan's Labyrinth
    39
    15

    Pan's Labyrinth

    Sergi López, Maribel Verdú

    Released2006

    Directed byGuillermo del Toro

    Pan's Labyrinth is a 2006 Spanish-Mexican dark fantasy film directed by Guillermo del Toro. It... more on Wikipedia

    More Pan's Labyrinth 

    #164 of 1,189 Every Oscar Winning Film Ever#110 of 242 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time

  • 14
    Aladdin
    43
    21

    Aladdin

    Mena Massoud, Naomi Scott

    Released2019

    Directed byGuy Ritchie

    Aladdin is a 2019 American musical romantic fantasy adventure film directed by Guy Ritchie,... more on Wikipedia
  • 15
    Red Riding Hood
    57
    37

    Red Riding Hood

    Amanda Seyfried, Gary Oldman

    Released2011

    Directed byCatherine Hardwicke

    Red Riding Hood is a 2011 American dark fantasy historical romance film directed by Catherine... more on Wikipedia

    More Red Riding Hood 

    #38 of 66 The Very Best Fairy Tale Movies#32 of 57 The Best Dark Fantasy Movies That Show You The Sinister Side Of Magic

  • 16
    Stardust
    80
    64

    Stardust

    Michelle Pfeiffer, Robert De Niro

    Released2007

    Directed byMatthew Vaughn

    Stardust is a 2007 British-American romantic fantasy film from Paramount Pictures, directed by... more on Wikipedia
  • 17
    Ever After
    114
    104

    Ever After

    Drew Barrymore, Anjelica Huston

    Released1998

    Directed byAndy Tennant

    Ever After is a 1998 American romantic comedy-drama film inspired by the fairy tale... more on Wikipedia

    More Ever After 

    #21 of 115 The Greatest Date Movies of All Time#43 of 54 The Best Movies to Curl Up And Watch When You're Sick

  • 18
    Penelope
    45
    32

    Penelope

    Reese Witherspoon, Christina Ricci

    Released2008

    Directed byMark Palansky

    Penelope is a 2008 fantasy romantic comedy film directed by Mark Palansky which was first... more on Wikipedia

    More Penelope 

    #184 of 317 The Best Movies For Kids#39 of 70 The Greatest Supernatural & Paranormal Teen Films

  • 19
    Maleficent
    130
    138

    Maleficent

    Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning

    Released2014

    Directed byRobert Stromberg

    Maleficent is a 2014 American dark fantasy film directed by Robert Stromberg, loosely inspired... more on Wikipedia
  • 20
    Splash
    37
    30

    Splash

    Tom Hanks, John Candy

    Released1984

    Directed byRon Howard

    Splash is a 1984 American fantasy romantic comedy film directed by Ron Howard, written by... more on Wikipedia

    More Splash 

    #55 of 314 The Funniest '80s Movies#267 of 1,647 The Most Rewatchable Movies

  • 21
    Sydney White
    29
    27

    Sydney White

    Amanda Bynes, Sara Paxton

    Released2007

    Directed byJoe Nussbaum

    Sydney White also known as Sydney White and the Seven Dorks is a 2007 teen comedy film... more on Wikipedia
  • 22
    Ella Enchanted
    96
    114

    Ella Enchanted

    Anne Hathaway, Heidi Klum

    Released2004

    Directed byTommy O'Haver

    Ella Enchanted is a 2004 British–American–Irish fantasy romantic comedy film loosely based on... more on Wikipedia
  • 23
    Gretel & Hansel: A Grim Fairy Tale
    7
    4

    Gretel & Hansel: A Grim Fairy Tale

    Sophia Lillis, Sam Leakey

    Released2020

    Directed byOz Perkins

    Gretel & Hansel: A Grim Fairy Tale is a 2020 American supernatural horror film directed by Oz... more on Wikipedia
  • 24
    Alice in Wonderland
    83
    115

    Alice in Wonderland

    Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway

    Released2010

    Directed byTim Burton

    Alice in Wonderland is a 2010 British-American live action and computer animated adventure... more on Wikipedia

    More Alice in Wonderland 

    #111 of 364 The Best Movies Based On Books#2 of 97 The Best Movies to Watch on Mushrooms

  • 25
    The Nutcracker and the Four Realms
    16
    22

    The Nutcracker and the Four Realms

    Mackenzie Foy, Keira Knightley

    Released2018

    Directed byLasse Hallström

    The Nutcracker and the Four Realms is a 2018 American fantasy film directed by Lasse... more on Wikipedia