Cruella should have been an original character


  • Disney’s live-action prequel, CruellaHe finds it difficult to connect with the original 101 Dalmatians story and changes the character to a point where it would have been better to have a film centered around an original character.
  • The film does not address the fact that Cruella De Vil is a puppy murderer, a defining characteristic of her villainous personality from the original film. It’s unclear how Disney will address this in future family-friendly installments.
  • Cruella deviates from the character’s tragic backstory and makes her less cruel than her iconic villain image. The film misses its mark by capturing the essence of Cruella De Vil as a truly evil antagonist.

In 1961, audiences were introduced to one of the most evil Disney villains of all time. Cruella De Vil, a clever play about the “cruel devil”, was originally based on the character from Dodie Smith’s novel Cruella De Vil. The Hundred and One Dalmatians. She was an heiress and fashion designer with a fierce obsession with Dalmatians.

Disney began the trend of reinventing their villains in live-action prequels and telling their side of the story. The first was Maleficent (2014), sleeping Beautyis the evil sorceress who could transform into a dragon and put the titular princess into her deep sleep. In 2021 the time had come CruellaNow is the time to rewrite the past. While Maleficent has managed to weave its story around the original story of sleeping Beauty, Cruella There wasn’t that much point in making a connection 101 Dalmatians. The character was so different that it would have been better to make the film about an original character or someone related to Cruella with a story of their own, rather than a misguided but entertaining prequel to the villain.

​​​​​​Sympathy for a puppy murderer is a bad name for Disney

Cruella visits costume shop in Disney's live action.

The real life inspiration behind Disney’s Cruella de Vil

Disney has prided itself on making its entertainment family-friendly for decades. Even when they started going down the villain origin route, the films had a positive edge, mostly hinting at darker parts of the stories, such as Maleficent having her wings ripped off by Stefan as a metaphor for sexual assault. Cruella seems to ignore the darkest but most central evil act she is known for, namely kidnapping and attempting to skin puppies. There’s a scene where Cruella puts on a protest fashion show to outdo the Baroness. She plays “I Wanna Be Your Dog” by The Stooges, implying that she murdered the Baroness’ dogs to make the clothes. She later reveals: “I didn’t do that, but people need a villain to believe in, and I’m happy to fill that need.“The scene is exciting and rebellious, but before the truth about the dogs is revealed, it’s confusing whether the film encourages viewers to stand up for or against Cruella’s actions. The Baroness is a cruel villain in her own right, but one that Cruella grows into. The film isn’t much better. Her intentions to take the Baroness’ place in the fashion world and essentially become her are not admirable either.

Cruella De Vil is a puppy murderer. In the original film, her obsession with Dalmatians stems from her wanting to sew a coat out of their fur. But she doesn’t want just any Dalmatians, she especially wants puppy fur. She believes the material will become softer as it takes advantage of puppies’ youthful skin. If there’s one thing these villain movies have in common so far, it’s the sympathetic perspective they try to convey to the villain by showing him from their perspective. But since Disney is already planning a sequel, they can’t continue to ignore Cruella’s definition of the act of actually killing dogs. It’s hard to imagine how they’ll manage to do this while keeping the film family friendly Cruella was the darkest live-action villain original film Disney has made to date.

The prequel does not follow on from the original film

Disney’s recent successes prove that an antagonist is not always a villain

Cruella creates the tragic backstory where the Baroness’ vicious Dalmatians kill Cruella’s mother, which would have been a clever way to show the life event that led her to seek revenge on them over her love of fashion. However, this version of Cruella knew from a young age that the dogs were controlled by the Baroness and that revenge should be taken on her and not her dogs. Cruella successfully does this by the end of the prequel by having the Baroness arrested for murder and transferring the deed to her estate. In the prequel, Cruella is in her twenties, but in the cartoon she is middle-aged, so there is still about 20 years from the end of the prequel to the classic story 101 Dalmatians so that she becomes the villain that fans know. The only problem is that the tragic backstory given for it is already resolved, so something else would have to happen to Cruella after the prequel to push her to the height of her cruelty 101 Dalmatians. The strangest difference is that at the end of the prequel, Cruella is the one who gives Perdita the Dalmatian to Anita and Pongo to Roger. Cruella’s personal attachment to the dogs could add another level of cruelty to the character, causing her to not care and even forget when she is older and wants them. However, it is more likely that this addition to the Cruella Prequel makes no sense at all. It’s almost like she’s playing matchmaker for them, which adds nothing to the plot and, if anything, confuses them even more.

While the first part of Maleficent is set before the events of sleeping Beauty, it finally catches up with the timeline of this story. Maleficent’s first appearance after hiding from humans and plotting revenge is Aurora’s birth. The film brought the defining moment of both her and Aurora’s character in the film. Maleficent had grown cold, and although she was no longer the nicest person after her contempt, her cruelty as a villain was directed at Aurora because she was what the king loved most. The king is now Stefan, who used her wings as leverage to gain the throne. He destroyed her heart, so she would do the same through his child. Adapting the original film to the original gives the film more freedom to change the characters since the audience has already seen the familiar part that matches it sleeping Beauty. The changes take place further into the film and take place between and after the events of the original film, including the discovery that Maleficient actually cares for Aurora. Even then, the film transitions from the original to its changes in parts, such as her familiar turning into a dragon instead of her, which makes more sense given his abilities. Malicious shows viewers the terrible treatment and tricks inflicted on her by humans that led her to become evil out of revenge. It doesn’t shy away from her villainous side either.

Both Malicious And Cruella Make good use of costumes to represent the dark sides of Maleficient and Cruella. Maleficent’s costume ranges from long, loose hair and a simple brown dress to a devilish black latex costume. Cruella goes from dyeing her hair red and wearing brat-like outfits to her iconic black and white hair with more daring fashion. On the other hand, it makes her two-toned hair a natural feature rather than a fashion item, and comes dangerously close to suggesting that she has an outdated portrayal of multiple personalities. This was added to the story and the original never hinted at this.

The true sequel to 101 Dalmatians is too bizarre for Disney to ever adapt

The audience is not alone when conflict arises Cruella because the movie was good, but it didn’t feel like it was about the Cruella character. Despite the elements of the characters they retained, they removed the worst of them that made her the iconic villain she was meant to be 101 Dalmatians. not how Maleficentthe film doesn’t try to redeem a villain after his bad deeds. Cruella It feels like an attempt was made to erase parts of the character that remind the viewer how terrible the villain was.

If Disney had made the film about an original character, perhaps Cruella’s daughter, trying to fight her mother’s shadow on her own life, then the concept could have worked. With the prequel sequel on the way, Disney has time to get into the role of the villain, which fans know is closer to the original.

Dustin Huang

Dustin Huang is a Nytimas U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Dustin Huang joined Nytimas in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

Related Articles

Back to top button