Here’s all the information that has been revealed so far about Disney’s Cruella 2. Directed by Craig Gillespie and starring Emma Stone as Estella a.k.a. Cruella de Vil, Cruella simultaneously serves as the origin story for the classic 101 Dalmatians villainess and lays the groundwork for a new live-action franchise. The movie sets up multiple potential sequels and spinoffs, including a 101 Dalmatians remake and a direct sequel.
Set in the late 1970s, Cruella details how a young orphan named Estella rose to become the black and white-haired fashion icon and master criminal who loves fur but despises dalmatians due to a traumatic childhood experience. The film delves into Cruella’s backstory and parentage while also introducing her partners in crime, Jasper (Joel Fry) and Horace (Paul Walter Hauser), as well as her childhood friend Anita Darling (Kirby Howell-Baptiste). Meanwhile, Emma Thompson portrays Cruella’s nemesis, Baroness von Hellman, and Mark Strong plays John, the Baroness’ valet and loyal accomplice in her own criminal enterprises.
Cruella completes Estella’s Joker-like transformation into Cruella de Vil and leaves the door wide open for the next chapter. Although there are many directions the franchise can take, Cruella 2 is officially moving forward as the continuation of the first movie. Here’s everything we know about Cruella 2 thus far.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Disney is moving forward with Cruella 2 after the first movie’s satisfying performance at the box office and Disney+ Premier Access, as well as its positive reception from critics and audiences alike. This comes as good news for Disney+ and fans of Cruella, as the recent conflict between Scarlett Johansson and Disney over the hybrid release of Black Widow had cast some doubts over the possibility of Emma Stone appearing in a future Disney+ release. The favorable reviews Cruella has received are a good sign that audiences are interested in following Cruella’s story in a direct sequel, a spinoff, or perhaps a 101 Dalmatians movie. Cruella certainly lays the groundwork for another film and has a mid-credits scene that teases 101 Dalmatians down the road.
While it didn’t take long for Disney to greenlight a Cruella sequel, Cruella 2 still doesn’t have an official release date. Although the sequel is already in the works, it’s likely that it won’t be released until 2023 at the earliest, taking into consideration the time Disney would need to mount the production and for the main cast to return. And that’s if things for Cruella 2 move quickly. For example, Maleficent: Mistress of Evil was released in 2019, five years after the original. There seems to be high interest to see Cruella 2, but the sequel could fall within a similar timeline.
The 2021 movie was always intended to be Cruella’s origin story. Cruella details how the orphaned Estella transformed herself into Cruella de Vil and supplanted Baroness von Hellman as an iconic fashion designer, but now that her character is established, the villain is just getting started. Cruella 2 can now show her taking over the fashion world while continuing her life as a notorious criminal.
Cruella 2 could remake/reboot 101 Dalmatians from Cruella’s perspective, or it could take the elements introduced in the first film and tell an original story about Cruella and her accomplices that further establishes de Vil’s hatred of dalmatians, which isn’t yet deep enough to warrant the events of 101 Dalmatians. Meanwhile, Emma Stone and Emma Thompson have also suggested their idea that Cruella 2 could take a cue from The Godfather Part II as a combined prequel/sequel that bounces back and forth from the Baroness’s origin and Cruella’s new adventure. This would present the opportunity to bring back Glenn Close’s iconic performance from Disney’s early 2000s movies alongside Emma Stone’s reimagining. Taking these possibilities into account, it’s likely that Disney will take some liberties regarding 101 Dalmatians canon to accommodate new stories.
Nearly every character introduced in Cruella could return for the sequel. Emma Stone’s return for Cruella 2 as the title character has been officially confirmed, and it’s likely that Joel Fry and Paul Walter Hauser will also return as Cruella’s accomplices, Jasper and Horace, as well as Kirby Howell-Baptiste as Cruella’s best friend Anita Darling, the gossip columnist. Emma Thompson could also reprise the Baroness, who could break out of prison and seek revenge on Cruella. Kayvan Novak’s lawyer-turned-songwriter Roger and John McCrea’s Artie could also be back.
If Disney finds a way to jump back and forward in time to narrate different moments of Cruella’s life in the sequel, Glenn Close could reprise her role as older Cruella and both Tipper Seifert-Cleveland and Billie Gadsdon could return as the younger versions of the villain at different points in her life. Similarly, Emily Beecham could come back in a flashback as Catherine Miller, Stella’s adoptive mother. While the sequel also has plenty of leeway to introduce new characters, fans would absolutely expect to see more dalmatians in Cruella 2 as well — namely, Pongo and Perdita.