Much as it did with 2014’s Maleficent and Angelina Jolie, Walt Disney Studios has plans in the works for another live-action movie featuring one of its iconic villains with a well-known actress being courted for the lead role.
Oscar-nominated actress Emma Stone (The Amazing Spider-Man, The Help) is reportedly in talks to play Cruella de Vil in the live-action movie Cruella, which will tell the origin story of the colorful, dog-hating villain from 101 Dalmations.
Stone is in early negotiations for the role, according to The Hollywood Reporter, with Disney hoping to begin production on the film this year.
Historically, Cruella de Vil has been a fashion-obsessed villain with an affinity for the fur of Dalmatian puppies, and was ranked as the 39th greatest villain in movie history by the American Film Institute back in 2005.
Fifty Shades of Grey and Saving Mr. Banks screenwriter Kelly Marcel is reportedly penning the script for Cruella, and is working from an earlier draft by The Devil Wears Prada and 27 Dresses writer Aline Brosh McKenna. There’s currently no director attached to the project, but with the studio hoping to get rolling on the film this year a decision will likely be made in the near future.
The project is likely to follow a similar course as Maleficent, providing an origin for the iconic villain that chronicles her path to becoming one of the most infamous antagonists in Disney’s cinematic stable of characters.
Created by novelist Dodie Smith for her 1956 novel The Hundred and One Dalmatians, Cruella de Vil was voiced by Betty Lou Gerson in Disney’s original, 1961 animated feature 101 Dalmatians. She was later portrayed by Glenn Close in the 1996 live-action movie 101 Dalmations directed by John Hughes, and in its sequel, 102 Dalmations. In the popular Once Upon A Time television series, she’s portrayed by Victoria Smurfit.
There’s currently no release date scheduled for Cruella.