Disney’s Live-Action ‘Cruella’ Movie With Emma Stone Eyes ‘Mozart in the Jungle’ Co-Creator to Direct
Disney is taking another one of the many (many, many, many) live-action projects from their growing to-do pile and officially placing it in the queue, as the studio appears to have found a director for their long-developing Cruella project. Like Maleficent, this one offers a bit of a twist, re-imagining the classic 101 Dalmatians story through the eyes of its villain, Cruella De Vil, with Emma Stone set to play the titular role.
Stone has been attached to Cruella for quite some time, and it hardly seems a coincidence that the latest news (and the first we’ve heard in a while) regarding Disney’s next villain-centric live-action project has arrived in the midst of awards season — with La La Land continuing to rack up nominations, now might be the time to fast-track Cruella.
That seems to be the case, as Deadline reports that Disney is in negotiations with Mozart in the Jungle co-creator Alex Timbers to helm Cruella, based on a screenplay by Kelly Marcel (Fifty Shades of Grey). Timbers is a two-time Tony-nominated Broadway writer and director, known for Peter and the Starcatcher and more recently for the surprise hit Oh, Hello, in which John Mulaney and Nick Kroll brought their beloved, tuna-loving elderly eccentric duo to the stage. He’s also collaborating with Baz Luhrmann on the upcoming Broadway adaptation of Moulin Rouge! and was previously attached to direct Disney’s stage version of Frozen.
It seems pretty clear that Cruella will be a musically-inclined film; Timbers clearly has the chops to deliver on that front, and his Broadway background should give Disney’s next villain origin story the theatricality we expect from a movie about the eccentric, fur-obsessed antagonist.
The only downside to the news is that Disney has once again hired a male director, and our fingers are tired from being crossed for so long while we wait for them to hire a woman to direct one of their big live-action re-tellings.