In the year 1885, the story follows Sarah Crewe, a young daughter of a wealthy English father, Ralph Crewe, living in British-ruled India. She starts attending an all-girl's seminary boarding school in London, where she excels in her studies and is loved deeply by many of her friends and classmates. Tragedy strikes when Sarah's father passes away and her family goes bankrupt, leaving her to become a poor orphan. The school's headmistress, Miss Minchin, takes advantage of this situation and makes her a maid in the school, trying hard to make her life as miserable as possible. However, Sarah, with the help of her friends, perseveres and tries to endure all her hardships until redemption comes at last.