Cruella: Everything We Know About Disney’s Live-Action Spin-Off

Oh hello cruel world! That’s right, Disney’s infamous villain Cruella de Vil will soon be returning to the big screen with the upcoming movie Cruella.

Following in the footsteps of their Maleficent movies, Disney are giving the puppy-kidnapper her very own story but unlike the Sleeping Beauty spin-off, Cruella promises that the villain will remain, well, villainous!

I, Tonya’s Craig Gillespie is on directing duties for the project, with Dana Fox (What Happens In Vegas) and Tony McNamara (The Favourite) penning the screenplay.

Here’s everything we know so far about the live-action spin-off from plot, to cast, and release date.

What is Cruella about?


Set before Cruella de Vil caused chaos in the beloved animated movie 101 Dalmatians and the 1996 live-action remake, Cruella will follow the young socialite during her earlier exploits in the worlds of both crime and fashion.

Taking place in 1970s London, we will see the young Cruella, who goes by the name of Estella, befriend a pair of young thieves and catch the eye of the Baroness von Hellman, a fashion legend.

Estella’s relationship with both the thieves and the Baroness will set into motion events which will lead her to embrace her wicked side and thus transform into the Cruella we met in the animated classic.

At the end of the day, the film’s aim is to explain how one woman ends up hatching a plan to kidnap several puppies to skin for a coat!

Who is in the cast?


Oscar-winner Emma Stone will take on the role of Cruella, a.k.a. Estella, donning the character’s infamous wig and red lipstick.

She will be joined by Emma Thompson as the Baroness von Hellman, and Paul Walter Hauser and Joel Fry as her criminal associates Horace and Jasper (Cruella de Vil’s henchmen in 101 Dalmatians).

The cast also features Mark Strong, Emily Beecham (rumoured to be playing Anita from the original movie), Jamie Demetriou and Kirby Howell-Baptiste, although their roles are currently unconfirmed.


Cruella, Horace and Jasper may not be the only characters from the original animation appearing in Cruella though, as Disney are holding their cards close to their chest in regards to cameos.

Whilst we know Cruella is set in the 1970s, it is unclear how much time has passed when we meet her in 101 Dalmatians, so there is the potential of a few references and maybe other characters too.

Is there a trailer?

Disney released a full trailer for Cruella on 17th February, giving us a look at what to expect from the movie including glimpses at the fabulous costumes as well as the mischief she creates.

Estella seems to be having a lot of fun in the 1970s city setting with the filmmakers seemingly embracing all things the period’s emerging punk-rock scene.

Essentially it looks like the film will be a riot!

When is the Cruella release date?


Cruella is due to release in cinemas worldwide on 28th May this year with its release date currently unaffected by the pandemic.

Although it was originally scheduled for 23rd December 2020, back in August 2019 it was moved to the current date, so before the COVID-19 virus was detected.

Due to the ongoing situation of course this release date could change, especially if Disney want to ensure cinemas are widely open across globally.


With streaming service Disney+ available though, they also have the option of making it exclusively available on there like they did with Soul, or they could put it on the service with Premier Access which means you can pay an extra cost to stream it, much like what they did with Mulan and the upcoming Raya And The Last Dragon.

Right now though the movie is being advertised as cinemas only this May.

Will there be more from Cruella?


Although Disney have only currently announced one Cruella movie, if it’s a huge hit then we could potentially expect more from the cackling villain.

Following Maleficent being a box office hit a sequel, Maleficent: Mistress Of Evil, was commissioned and released, and so if Cruella rakes Disney in some cash we can maybe expect it to receive the same treatment.

We will just have to wait and see though what it brings!

Cruella will be released in cinemas on 26th May 2021.

Shop our range of Disney merchandise here.

For all things pop culture and the latest news, follow us on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and TikTok.

Emily Murray

Emily Murray


Emily is a journalist and film critic who unashamedly cries at most movies having got too emotionally attached. When not at the cinema, she is at home cuddling her cat Holmes, whilst binge watching New Girl. She can be found on Twitter @emilyvmurray