Everything to know about Cruella, the de-vilish dognapper origin story
To see her is to take a sudden chill, so maybe make some tea or something, because Cruella de Vil is about to be everywhere. Disney's sinister style maven is getting the live-action big-screen treatment — I guess like Maleficent, sure, but make it fashion and lose the compassion — in her very own origin story, Cruella. We know you're curious, so here are all the details.
What is Cruella about?!
I'm so glad you asked. Taking place years before her much-maligned involvement in the whole 101 Dalmatians debacle, the new film follows Cruella as a young woman — known at first as Estella, but don't worry, that will be corrected — living in London in the 1970s, where she finds her voice (and more importantly, her look) amid the burgeoning punk scene. A budding fashion designer, she gets a job with the house of Baroness von Hellman, an established couturier, before the two ladies' relationship grows fiercely contentious. In short: It's a fashion face-off. Dress accordingly.
Who is involved?
That list is more exclusive than the Met Gala, I'm telling you. Emma Stone stars as our devilish antiheroine and Emma Thompson provides her old-school fashion foil as the Baroness. Backing up our Oscar-winning Emmas will be Joel Fry and Paul Walter Hauser as Cruella's henchmen Jasper and Horace, respectively, as well as Mark Strong, Emily Beecham, and Kirby Howell-Baptiste. I, Tonya filmmaker Craig Gillespie is behind the camera, directing from a script by Dana Fox (Isn't It Romantic) and Tony McNamara (The Favourite).
When does Cruella come out?
You won't have to wait much longer, because she'll make her grand debut in theaters and on Disney+ Premier Access on May 28.
What on God's green earth is Disney+ Premier Access?
Only the chicest form of digital Disney drop, my pets! It means, as with Mulan and Raya and the Last Dragon, Disney+ subscribers will have the option to access Cruella on the streaming platform for a one-time fee (on top of normal subscription costs) as early as the film's theatrical release date. Once purchased, the film is added to the paying account permanently, and for as many repeat viewings as desired; it will also eventually become available to all subscribers, fee or not, at a later date.
Is there a trailer?
There are two! Aren't we spoiled? See the first above, the second below.
Have we not seen live-action Cruella before?
Dahling, we have. Glenn Close memorably donned that black-and-white wig for 1996's live-action 101 Dalmatians and its 2000 sequel 102 Dalmatians, both of which would take place years after the events of Cruella, which, lest we forget, is our wicked protagonist's origin story. On the small screen, ABC's fairy-tale mash-up series Once Upon a Time introduced Victoria Smurfit's Cruella as a character in its fourth season, and the 2015 Disney Channel Original Movie Descendants featured Wendy Raquel Robinson in the role.
How do I catch up on all the existing Cruella lore before May 28?!
Disney+ is your one-stop shop, mes chéris. There you can stream the animated 101 Dalmatians, both of the Glenn-fests, all seven seasons of Once Upon a Time, and Descendants. There's also Dodie Smith's 1956 novel, which first brought our problematic queen of glamour into the cultural consciousness. Reading is such a classic look.