The live-action Disney train keeps on a-rollin’ as the cast of Cruella, an origin story for 101 Dalmations baddie Cruella de Vil, comes together. Joel Fry, who co-starred in Danny Boyle‘s Yesterday this year and once met a very stabby end as Hizdahr zo Lora on Game of Thrones, has joined the project, according to Variety. The actor will play Jasper, one half of the fumbling dog-napping duo who steals those 101 Dalmations in the original animated film. Paul Walter Hauser (BlackKklansman) will play his partner in crime, Horace, while Oscar-winner Emma Stone is set to portray the title villain.
Directed by I, Tonya helmer Craig Gillespie from a script by Tony McNamara (The Favourite)—working from a draft by writer Dana Fox (Isn’t It Romantic)—Cruella will find the future Disney rogue working as a lowly department store worker in 1970s London. An encounter with a Baroness, played by none other than Emma Thompson, sets young Cruella on a journey to reclaim a family heirloom at any cost. (The film will also, presumably, explain why Cruella de Vil is eventually so chill with straight-up murdering a sackful of puppies.)
If you’re wondering about the “why” of it all, look no further than the studio’s recent track record with live-action re-imaginings. Jon Favreau‘s remake of The Lion King, which isn’t technically live-action but strives for photorealism in its CGI, crossed a billion dollars worldwide, as did Guy Ritchie‘s Aladdin from earlier this year.
Cruella hits theaters on December 23, 2020.