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Maleficent (// or //) is a fictional character who appears in Walt Disney Productions' 16th animated feature film, Sleeping Beauty (1959). She is an evil fairy and the self-proclaimed "Mistress of All Evil" who, after not being invited to a christening, curses the infant Princess Aurora to "prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and die" before the sun sets on Aurora's sixteenth birthday.
|Sleeping Beauty character|
Maleficent as she appears in Disney's Sleeping Beauty
|First appearance||Sleeping Beauty (1959)|
|Created by||Marc Davis|
|Based on||The evil fairy from the Charles Perrault's fairy tale|
|Title||Mistress of All Evil|
Maleficent is based on the evil fairy godmother character in Charles Perrault's fairy tale Sleeping Beauty, as well as the villainess who appears in the Brothers Grimm's retelling of the story, Little Briar Rose. Maleficent was animated by Marc Davis.
She is voiced by Eleanor Audley, who earlier voiced Lady Tremaine, Cinderella's evil stepmother, in Cinderella (1950). She serves as a recurring antagonist in Disney's House of Mouse, voiced by Lois Nettleton, and in the Kingdom Hearts video game series, voiced by Susanne Blakeslee. She was also an antagonist in the Disney Channel movie Descendants, portrayed by Kristin Chenoweth.
A postmodernist revision of the character appeared as the protagonist in the 2014 live-action film Maleficent, portrayed by Angelina Jolie, who reprised the role in the sequel Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, which is scheduled to be released on October 18, 2019.
- 1 Development
- 2 Appearances
- 2.1 Sleeping Beauty
- 2.2 Maleficent
- 2.3 Other appearances
- 2.3.1 Mistress of All Evil: A Tale of the Dark Fairy
- 2.3.2 Maleficent's Revenge
- 2.3.3 Kingdom Hearts
- 2.3.4 Disney's House of Mouse
- 2.3.5 Kingdom Keepers
- 2.3.6 Dream Along With Mickey
- 2.3.7 Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party
- 2.3.8 World on Ice
- 2.3.9 Diva Villains
- 2.3.10 Mickey Mousecapade
- 2.3.11 Once Upon a Time
- 2.3.12 Descendants franchise
- 2.3.13 Disney Infinity
- 3 Reception
- 4 References
- 5 External links
The character was animated by Marc Davis. The wicked sorceress or horned witch was aptly named "Maleficent" (an adjective which means "doing evil or harm"). In determining Maleficent's design, standard depictions of witches and hags were dismissed as Mattinson's opted for an elegant, sinister, green-skinned beauty, depicted as "vain femme fatale, utilizing a classic archetype of a bad woman." According to Mattinson, Maleficent "was designed like a giant vampire bat to create a feeling of menace."
She was voiced by Eleanor Audley, who had previously performed Lady Tremaine, Cinderella's evil stepmother, in Cinderella. Audley also provided some live-action recording for both of these characters, to inspire the animators. In addition, dancer Jane Fowler performed some live-action reference for Maleficent. Animators Ollie Johnston and Frank Thomas, in their book The Disney Villain, describe animating Audley's voice as "a difficult assignment but a thrilling one, working to that voice track with so much innuendo mixed in with the fierce power."
Maleficent transforms into a dragon in the original film, which was animated by Eric Cleworth, who said that the dragon was modeled on a rattlesnake, with "powerful muscles moving a bulky body over the rocky terrain." Sound effects man Jim Macdonald searched for the sound of a dragon's fiery breath by asking the U.S. Army to send him some training films on flame throwing. These films provided just the right sound for him.
In the animated film, Maleficent arrives at King Stefan and Queen Leah's castle during the christening of their newborn daughter, the Princess Aurora. She expresses displeasure about not receiving an invitation, to which one of the good fairies Merryweather replies that she was unwanted. Angered, she prepares to leave. Queen Leah asks her if she is offended, causing Maleficent to deny her rage, and subsequently offers to bestow a "gift" on Aurora to show that she "bears no ill will". Maleficent confirms that Aurora will grow in grace and beauty, "beloved by all who know her", but as revenge for not being invited, she places a curse on Aurora so that before the sun sets on her sixteenth birthday, she will prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and die. Laughing, her presence leaves, with the Royal Guards unable to seize her. Merryweather, who still has a gift to bestow, is unable to dispel Maleficent's power, but is able to weaken the curse so that Aurora will fall into a deep sleep instead, with only a kiss from her true love needed to awaken her.
Later, at her castle in the Forbidden Mountains, a frustrated Maleficent asks her bestial army why they have been unable to find Aurora, who had been hidden and brought up by the three good fairies. Maleficent learns that they have focused on searching for a baby the entire time, even though years have passed. She flies into a destructive rage, and soon desperately instructs her pet raven, Diablo, to find Aurora. The bird manages to succeed due to a magical quarrel between two of the fairies, which exposes their location.
On the evening of Aurora's sixteenth birthday, after the three fairies have momentarily left the depressed princess alone, Maleficent visits Aurora in the form of a will-o-the-wisp, luring the princess to a room where Maleficent transforms into a spinning wheel. Aurora pricks her finger on the spindle, fulfilling the curse.
Later on, Maleficent and her goons capture Prince Phillip, Aurora's true love, and imprison him. Maleficent then rests well, thinking she has triumphed.
Maleficent later wakes up and, by seeing that Diablo has been turned to stone, discovers that the fairies have freed Philip from her dungeon. She climbs to the top of one of her castle's towers and proceeds to blast Philip with lightning, and after the good fairies foil these attempts, she summons a forest of thorns, through which Philip slices his way out. Enraged, she blows away and confronts him in front of King Stefan's castle, and transforms into a huge dark dragon. The three fairies cast an enhancing enchantment on Phillip's Sword of Truth, which he throws into Maleficent's heart, mortally wounding her before she falls off the crumbling cliff to her death.
The 2014 live action reimagining presents Maleficent as a good-hearted but tragic fairy who protects the Moors, a realm of supernatural beings, from the neighboring human kingdom. She is played by Angelina Jolie.
Prior to sporting her iconic black attire, Maleficent had a pair of feathery fairy wings, wore a brown dress, and was always barefoot with an anklet on her left ankle. After healing a tree, Maleficent befriends and falls in love with a young peasant boy named Stefan, upon being alerted to his presence by Knotgrass, Thistletwit and Flittle, a trio of pixies.
As an adult, Maleficent grows apart from and is betrayed by Stefan, who uses iron to burn off her wings so that he can ascend the throne of the human kingdom, as per a bounty declared by the dying King Henry, who bore a grudge against her. Taking a raven named Diaval as a servant, a now hate-filled Maleficent names herself ruler of the Moors and her outfit changes to a darker one. When she learns that Stefan is now king and has had a newborn daughter named Aurora (Elle Fanning) with his wife Queen Leila, Maleficent acts on the notion that true love is nonexistent by casting her curse on the newborn Aurora, which she makes to only be broken by the kiss of true love, as revenge on Stefan. Because the three pixies that were assigned to look after Aurora proved to be incompetent, however, Maleficent cares for and saves the child from afar in order to ensure that her curse is completed, only to eventually develop a maternal affection for her. That love proves essential for a repentant Maleficent to undo her own curse when she kisses Aurora on the forehead. After waking from her sleep, Aurora helps restore Maleficent's wings to her when Stefan attempts to kill Maleficent, allowing her to defeat Stefan.
Soon after Stefan's death and Aurora's ascension, Maleficent crowns Aurora as the ruler of the Moors to unite their kingdoms forever under one throne.
Jolie is set to reprise the role in Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, in which Maleficent's relationship with Aurora will be tested. Other fairies of her species will appear, led by Chiwetel Ejiofor's Connal
Mistress of All Evil: A Tale of the Dark FairyEdit
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (December 2017)
Maleficent is the protagonist in Serena Valentino's Disney Villains book franchise.
Maleficent was featured in the book sequel to Sleeping Beauty called Maleficent's Revenge. Two years following the events of the film, a specific solar eclipse has an effect on fairy magic that causes Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather to feel weak. The spell on Diablo is negated enabling him to find Maleficent's remains and use her staff to revive her.
On the day of the celebration, Maleficent storms in and places a curse upon the castle turning every soul with the exception of Aurora to stone. Tortured and desperate, Aurora pleads for mercy upon Phillip and her people going as far as to asking Maleficent to turn her into stone, as well. Maleficent refuses as she's unable to place a curse on the princess due to Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather's protection spell, but she is able to grant a wish resulting in Aurora sacrificing her life in exchange for her loved ones and people.
With Aurora once again put into a sleep-like state, the kingdom citizens are freed including Phillip, who rushes to the Forbidden Mountains to save his bride. There, a battle between Dragon Maleficent and the prince takes place. It is difficult for Prince Phillip since he doesn't have the Sword of Truth with him. The evil dragon attempts to bite Phillip with her venomous fangs, but she accidentally strikes her own tail, killing herself instead. When Maleficent is defeated once and for all, Phillip once again wakes Aurora with a kiss of true love.
Maleficent appears as a major character in the Kingdom Hearts video game series, voiced by Susanne Blakeslee in the English versions and Toshiko Sawada in the Japanese versions. She has appeared in every game in the series except for Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days, being one of the series' key antagonists alongside Xehanort with Pete acting as her second-in-command. As revealed in the series prequel Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep, she encounters Master Xehanort who inspired her to claim Kingdom Hearts for herself while unknowingly serving as a pawn to the Keyblade Master's plans.
In the first game, Maleficent took the ruined Radiant Garden as her lair Hollow Bastion and recruited both Riku and fellow Disney villains (Jafar, Hades, Ursula, Captain Hook and Oogie Boogie) to seek out the seven Princesses of Heart (Kairi, Alice, Snow White, Cinderella, Aurora, Belle and Jasmine) to unlock the path to Kingdom Hearts. But she is defeated by Sora, Donald Duck and Goofy and fades into darkness, the group and Riku encounter memory-based simulations of her in Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. Maleficent is resurrected in Kingdom Hearts II as she seeks a new lair while finding herself competing against Organization XIII for Kingdom Hearts, ending up having a temporary truce with Sora's group. In Kingdom Hearts Coded and Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, Maleficent makes attempts to take control of the Datascape but is foiled in both attempts. She appears in the prequel Kingdom Hearts χ, having traveled back in time in an attempt to undo her own defeat, but ultimately fails. She returns in Kingdom Hearts III seeking a mysterious Black Box predating the Keyblade War, ultimately finding it in Luxu's possession.
Disney's House of MouseEdit
Maleficent is a recurring character in the TV series Disney's House of Mouse, voiced by Lois Nettleton. She also appeared as a villain in the film Mickey's House of Villains. In the episode "Halloween With Hades", Hades falls in love with her.
In the book series by Ridley Pearson, Kingdom Keepers, Maleficent appears as one of the first Overtakers encountered as she intends to leave the confines of Disney World to take over the world. She recruits Jez with a spell due to the girl's abilities as a fairly (almost like a fairy, but fairly human) could reveal her plans, but fails. She breaks the seal to revive Chernabog as they escape in an ice truck to Disney's Hollywood Studios. It is said that the temperature goes down when she is around; later it is revealed she does this because warm temperatures weaken her magic. Later, in the fourth book, she and Chernabog are imprisoned in a hidden prison in Animal Kingdom, and during a blackout, the Evil Queen and Cruella de Vil make DHIs and rescue them. In the fifth book, Maleficent and the rest of the Overtakers ride the Dream on its first cruise, using Tia Dalma to revive Chernabog at full power. She meets her end in the sixth book when the Keepers' leader, Finn, rips a hole in her with his DHI powers. However, at the end of the seventh book, Tia Dalma enacts a ritual to resurrect Maleficent.
Dream Along With MickeyEdit
In the Dream Along With Mickey stage show at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom, Maleficent is one of the villains who appear onstage to threaten Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck and Goofy. Maleficent states that since people no longer believe in dreams, it is the perfect time for her to return to power and make the Magic Kingdom "The Place Where Nightmares Come True". But Mickey leads the crowd in a chant of "Dreams Come True!" and scares away Maleficent's minions, Captain Hook and Smee, as well as defeating Maleficent herself.
Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween PartyEdit
Maleficent also makes appearances during Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at the Walt Disney World Resort. She makes an appearance through her voice in HalloWishes, a Halloween-themed fireworks show along with Ursula, Jafar, and Oogie Boogie. Susan Blakeslee provides Maleficent's voice in those cases. Maleficent also appears during the Disney Villains Mix and Mingle stage show at that same event, appearing alongside fellow Disney Villains, including Captain Hook, Cruella de Vil, The Queen of Hearts, Jafar, and the Evil Queen.
World on IceEdit
Maleficent appears in the new version of the show Disneyland Adventure (replacing The Incredibles villain Syndrome). When she terrorizes the resort, she puts the entire kingdom to sleep and puts Minnie Mouse and Donald Duck into Sleeping Beauty Syndrome. She later took over It's a Small World and Pirates of the Caribbean, but The Incredible Family managed to defeat her, though she vowed for revenge.
Maleficent is part of the "Diva Villains" line-up, a sub-franchise of the main Disney Villains franchise. Maleficent is the last "diva" to appear in the event at Disneyland, just as the Evil Queen and Cruella de Vil are complaining on Madam Mim's behavior. Next, Maleficent sings "That Old Black Magic" alone and later "We're Divas" along with the whole cast of the show.
Once Upon a TimeEdit
A version of Maleficent plays a role in the storylines for the 2011 American fantasy drama TV series Once Upon a Time, played by Kristin Bauer van Straten as a witch who is able to take the form of a fire-breathing dragon. Maleficent is first introduced as the "only friend" of the Evil Queen from Snow White. She is also somewhat responsible in her use of magic: she kept Rumpelstiltskin's Dark Curse hidden to ensure it would never be used, and, upon learning she had been robbed by Robin Hood, allowed him to keep the gold on the condition that Will Scarlet return a dangerous mirror (actually a portal to Wonderland) he had stolen. She does have a bit of a temper, having gone after two generations of Sleeping Beauties: Queen Briar Rose and Princess Aurora, her daughter.
Rumplestiltskin once assembled her, Cruella de Vil, and Ursula as the "Queens of Darkness" to obtain the Dark Curse from within Bald Mountain. All three of them had combined their talents to obtain it while having to avoid the Chernabog.
Maleficent has a daughter named Lily whose egg was separated from her due to Isaac (who was the Author at the time; he was responsible for recording the stories but chose to alter them instead) setting Snow White and Prince Charming down a path where they would be forced to choose between accepting that their daughter, the as-yet-unborn Emma, had free will and thus could become evil, or choosing to corrupt an innocent ("as yet unformed in the ways of old and evil") and transfer Emma's potential for darkness into the chosen vessel. They chose the latter and stole the as-yet-unhatched Lily from Maleficent; Maleficent was weak from giving birth/laying the egg and was consequently unable to defend herself or her child. The Sorcerer's Apprentice, being controlled by Isaac, proceeded to transfer Emma's potential for darkness into the egg containing Lily; Lily was then transported to Earth alongside Ursula and Cruella de Vil, who were attempting to rescue her on Maleficent's behalf (Snow and Charming had been unaware that their chosen vessel would be sent to another world, not having asked about its fate; however, once realising that the egg contained a human infant as opposed to a dragoon, they did attempt to prevent the hatching egg falling into the portal).
When transported to Storybrooke, Maleficent was trapped in her dragon form and confined to the caves beneath the town library, and she was later killed by Emma Swan to obtain a vial of liquid True Love that had previously been hidden within her body by Prince Charming (as part of a deal with Rumplestiltskin). She also returned in the second season as a wraith when Captain Hook was used as a distraction while Regina looked for a powerful object, the failsafe, so that she could blow up Storybrooke and escape with Henry; Hook was able to defeat Maleficent and escaped with the help of Greg and Tamara.
Upon being resurrected by Rumplestiltskin due to her ashes being exposed to Mary Margaret Blanchard and David Nolan's blood, Maleficent works with Rumplestiltskin, Cruella de Vil, and Ursula to ensure that villains and not heroes would be the ones with happy endings. During this time Maleficent makes a deal with Rumplestiltkin. Despite her not fulfilling her end of the bargain, Rumple, empathising as a parent who has lost a child, agrees to show her the fate of her child anyway. She learns that, despite Cruella having led her to believe that her child had perished during the journey to the Land Without Magic, her child, a daughter, survived and was soon adopted. Following Ursula reconciling with her father Poseidon and Cruella being killed by Emma in defence of Henry's life (or so she believed), Maleficent chooses to turn her back on Rumplestiltskin, pre-empting his inevitable betrayal. With the help of Regina and Emma she is reunited with Lily and lays aside her plans to get revenge on Mary Margaret and David. Following Lily's first transformation into a dragon, Maleficent convinces Lily to stay in Storybrooke so she can learn what it means to be a dragon. Lily later tells Emma that Maleficent doesn't know who Lily's father is, since the mating took place while both partners were in dragon form. Maleficent reappears in her dragon form in the series finale, prompting Regina to ask if Lily ever found her father, and Zelena replies that it was Zorro.
Kristin Chenoweth signed on to play Maleficent in Disney's original Disney Channel movie Descendants, which follows the teenage children of Disney's iconic heroes and villains. All the Disney villains (including the ones who died after being brought back to life) who resided on the United States of Auradon have been isolated on the Isle of the Lost (a place sealed with a magical barrier in order to prevent all the villains to escape or make magic) after King Beast and Queen Belle united the kingdoms following their honeymoon. 20 years later, the son of Queen Belle and King Beast, Ben, makes a proclamation to give a chance to the kids of the Isle of the Lost to join society again, starting with four kids, including Maleficient's own daughter Mal (portrayed by Dove Cameron).
Descendants: Isle of the LostEdit
In the prequel novel Isle of the Lost, it is stated that Maleficent became the official ruler of the Isle of the Lost. Since the Evil Queen also wanted to rule the Isle, they became rivals. In some point before the events of the book, Maleficent had a "moment of weakness" with an unknown human male (who is never mentioned anymore after that incident) and became pregnant with a daughter. Maleficent gave her baby girl her own name, but nicknamed her "Mal" since she didn't believe her daughter could be truly evil. She is half human. Six years later, after finding out that the Evil Queen didn't invite Mal to her daughter Evie's birthday party, she banished both females from the main city and for eternity; however, after ten years, Evie and her mother returned to the lone isle, but Maleficent wasn't aware of that at first, as she doesn't really care. When Carlos, the son of Cruella de Vil, breaks the magical barrier for a second, Maleficent's pet Diablo is freed of his stone curse and senses that the Eye of the Dragon (Maleficent's staff) has also awakened. He travels to the city in the Isle of the Lost and finds Maleficent, who orders her daughter Mal to recover the Eye of the Dragon (which is located in Maleficent's Castle). Mal departs to find the Eye with Carlos, Evie and Jay (the son of Jafar), but since Maleficent doesn't trust Mal, she secretly orders Diablo to follow Mal and retrieve the Eye. Although her suspicions became true when Diablo comes back with the Eye and Mal with empty hands, she was shocked when she realized Mal was able to find the Eye of the Dragon in her old throne hall, but quickly becomes disappointed when Mal admits that she touched the Eye instead of tricking someone else to touch it first, since Maleficent cursed the Eye to make anyone else fall in a 1000 years sleep (which was Mal's original plan; Mal wanted revenge on Evie, so she was supposed to force Evie to touch the Eye's crystal.)
In the 2015 film Descendants, when Maleficent receives the news about Prince Ben's proclamation to take her daughter Mal, along with Evie, Carlos and Jay to Auradon to join society again, Maleficent "joins" forces with the Evil Queen, Jafar and Cruella De Vil and orders Mal and her friends to steal the Fairy Godmother's wand in order to use it to bend good and evil at her will. Much to her disbelief, Mal does not want to go with the plan. Maleficent forces Mal into a magical "staring contest" in order to establish her power over Mal, who loses and finally accepts to carry on the plan with the other three. Maleficent gives Mal her own magical spellbook in order to make the task easier and warns Mal not to blow it.
When Mal and her friends show up in a museum to steal the magic wand, they find wax figures of their parents. Mal asks her mother to tell her what to do and the Maleficent statue comes to life and encourages Mal to keep her evil ways, promising that they will rule together as mother and daughter and eventually she will take her place.
A few weeks later, she and the other three villains get a videochat call with the kids; where Maleficent makes jokes to the Fairy Godmother about the magic she performed in Cinderella (which the Fairy Godmother did not take very well) and asks Mal (hiding her real intentions as motherly love) when she will have the wand; she gets a little annoyed when Mal informs her mother that they need to wait until Ben's coronation, but when Cruella interrupts her to scream to her son, she no longer can interrogate Mal about the plan.
Days later, at Prince Ben's coronation, she is shocked when she sees Mal looking like a princess and by Ben's side, but prays to her daughter to "don't blow it". In the coronation, the Fairy Godmother's daughter Jane steals her mother's wand in order to give herself a magical makeover like Cinderella's, but by mistake destroys the magical barrier of the Isle of the Lost. After recovering her old magic, Maleficient shows up in the coronation and orders Mal (who took the magic wand out of Jane) to give her the wand, not knowing that her daughter and her friends vowed to be good moments earlier. Mal gives the magic wand back to the Fairy Godmother, but Maleficent casts a freeze spell on everybody (except for herself, her daughter and her friends) and takes the wand from the Fairy Godmother. Mal and her mother have an argument about Mal's choices and, even for Maleficent's astonishment, successfully casts a spell to take the wand out of Maleficent's hand. Maleficent becomes furious and demands Mal to give the wand back to her. But Carlos says "Maybe good really is more powerful than evil." Maleficent laughs at this and a dog comes up to her. She shoves it off and Jay comes and touches her staff, causing it to glow green. She thumps him on the forehead, laughs again, and transforms herself into a dragon. After Evie blinds her with light from her magic mirror, she and Mal have another staring contest, but Mal casts a spell three times (The strength of evil is good as none, when stands before four hearts as one!") and fights back. Maleficent cannot stand all the goodness and love and transforms into a little lizard, which is the same size as the love in her heart. Later propaganda states that Maleficent was put in a "tiny cell", but Auradon's residents do not know where she has been kept.
Maleficent is seen briefly in her Lizard form inside a terrarium in Mal's room and is last seen being put in a box by Mal when she returns to the Isle of the Lost.
In this film, Hades is revealed to be Maleficent's ex-husband and Mal's father, who left Maleficent when Mal was just a baby, claiming she was not the “easiest” person to get along with.
Descendants: Return to the Isle of the LostEdit
In the sequel novel Return to the Isle of the Lost, Maleficent remains a tiny lizard in a tiny cell, being safe-guarded constantly. Maleficent only sleeps in the cage, ignoring even Mal. When the citizens of Camelot Hights report spotting a dragon, they suspect it to be Maleficent's doing. Later, it's revealed that it was Madam Mim causing all the disturbances.
Maleficent is a playable character in the Disney Infinity video games series, voiced by Rajia Baroudi and sporting her modified appearance from the live-action Angelina Jolie film. As with the other playable characters in the game, a tie-in figure for Maleficent was also released.
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (May 2014)
The original version of Maleficent has been called as "one of the most sinister Disney Villains". She is generally described as an "evil, cold hearted fairy who can curse an innocent baby just because she is not invited to the christening ceremony." Guillermo del Toro has stated that along with Vermithrax in Dragonslayer, Maleficent is his favorite cinematic, Disney dragon. Voice actress Eleanor Audley and supervising animator Marc Davis were also praised for their work on the character. In 2016, The Frisky described Maleficent and the Evil Queen as "two of the best-realized female villains in movie history."
Maleficent's live action version from the film series of the same name has received critical attention, different from its original, animated counterpart. Benjamin Justice describes this version of Maleficent as "a full person, good and evil, powerful and vulnerable, vengeful and loving" and notes that, while she and Aurora value heterosexual relationships and love, neither of them "let the idea of [one true love] define the arc of the personal or public lives." When analyzing Maleficent's disability after she loses her wings due to Stephan's betrayal, Colleen Elaine Donnelly compares her role to that of Elphaba in Wicked, explaining that in both cases, the story "intends to reform the stereotype of the evil witch by providing a backstory."
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