Emma Stone confirmed for 'Cruella' sequel amid Scarlett Johansson-Disney lawsuit
Oscar-winning actress Emma Stone is officially returning as Cruella de Vil in the sequel to Disney's Cruella. The second installment to the villain origin story had been greenlit a while ago, but the star's participation had remained unsure. This news came days after reports suggested Stone was also considering suing Disney following Black Widow star Scarlett Johansson's lawsuit against the conglomerate.
As per Deadline, Stone only recently signed the dotted line and the new deal "mutually benefits both sides." Notably, Cruella was the first movie, along with Black Widow, to be released on simultaneous theatrical and Disney+ Premium Video on Demand (PVOD) model. Disney's call to digitally release the films, allegedly without prior intimation to the talents, had been a major part of Johansson's suit.
To note, we don't know if Cruella 2 will also get a hybrid release or only come out in the theaters. A representative of Stone's agency told Deadline, "This agreement demonstrates that there can be an equitable path forward that protects artists and aligns studios' interests with talent (sic)." They appreciated the "studio's willingness to recognize [the Aloha star's] contributions as a creative partner."
Tracing back, the origin movie on the 101 Dalmatians villainess released on May 28 on Disney+ and in selected theatres in certain countries. And, makers had announced a sequel was coming in early June, signaling the crime comedy was profitable enough for the studio to carry forward the franchise. Apparently, Cruella brought in over $222 million (approximately Rs. 1,647.62 crore) in worldwide ticket sales.
Reportedly, director Craig Gillespie and screenwriter Tony McNamara are returning for the sequel. Earlier, it was said Cruella's earnings were affected due to its release on Disney+, where it was available for $29.99. Hence, Stone, who had executively produced it, was speculated to have suffered a loss like Johansson and was supposedly considering the legal road. But now it seems, her plans have changed.