It’s not exactly a trend to see the villain of a Disney movie shown in any light other than a negative one, but that appears to be what might happen in the next 101 Dalmatians movie, which will be a prequel titled Cruella. The movie will show how the main antagonist went from a run of the mill fashion designer to the epitome of evil that she was portrayed as in pretty much every movie and appearance thus far. In fact, it does feel pertinent to mention that in the show Once Upon A Time she was shown to be a rather sympathetic individual at some point, someone that had a sordid past that had truly messed her up and left her without any other option than to become a villain unlike many others. How she’ll start her transition from sane individual to insane villain will no doubt be interesting since it’s likely that it will feature a take we haven’t seen yet, and Emma Stone will no doubt have her own take on the character that will be great or will be ridiculed by the time all is said and done. It was enough of a shock to see Maleficent, who is also one of Disney’s most noted villains, suddenly turned into the protagonist of her own story, but to think that a woman who wanted to skin puppies will be given an origin story that shows her as something other than a monster is a sign of the times to be certain.
To be fair, it’s not so much identifying with the villain as it is explaining why she is the way she is. Most people want to believe that no one is born bad, even though we do have stories of those that were born as ‘bad seeds’ and didn’t get any better as they grew older. But Cruella has been reviewed more than once in the past as a person and not just a mean-spirited individual that is absolutely brutal in how she goes about getting what she wants. Something obviously drove her to become the woman that would one day be one of the most terrifying people to ever grace a Disney movie. Some would say that it doesn’t matter, that we make our choices and have to live with them, and that’s the truth without any doubts, but looking back and wondering just what could have happened and what might have been done to keep people from going down a dark path is usually fairly interesting since it can yield some very telling results. For instance, some of the worst villains in Disney history are also likely to have some of the most messed-up origin stories imaginable. After all, the reason that Maleficent went bad was due to the betrayal she suffered at the hands of a human she cared deeply about.
It could be extremely interesting to find out just what drove Cruella to be so vile since there is most definitely a reason, but trying to think of what it could be and using a TV show as a guide only gets a person so far until a concrete reason needs to be given. The original story might have touched upon it, and even the live-action version with Glenn Close might have had something to say about it, but it’s nothing so revealing that people remember obviously. All that’s really been told is that Cruella is a very evil and vicious person that will do anything she needs to in order to get her way. The cast for the movie is going to be made up of several noted actors such as Mark Strong, Emma Thompson, and Paul Walter Hauser just to name a few, which means that it won’t suffer from a lack of talent since each individual that has been selected for the movie has been around for a while and therefore has a decent amount of expertise that can be used to bring this movie to life. But finding out why Cruella lives up to her name in such a way is the driving purpose behind the movie since as a prequel it’s very likely that we won’t see the puppies or the couple from the original story. By that point, Cruella is already firmly established as the villain and is someone that is well known for being the type of person that fans have come to regard her as.
Empathizing with the villains in Disney movies is a lot easier when one goes back to their origin story, and it does make sense that any rumors that have been heard about a movie concerning Ursula from The Little Mermaid might eventually be well-founded. It’s become a popular idea to take a look back in history at this point and figure out what can be brought forward, even if we’re not always sure why.
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