‘Cruella’ Trailer Is Reminding Everyone of ‘Joker’: ‘She’s Crazy and Evil’

Emma Stone is being compared to Joaquin Phoenix’s dark DC character


The trailer for Emma Stone’s “Cruella” debuted Wednesday, giving fans their first look at the origins of one of Disney’s cruelest villains. But whereas Maleficent started as a hero and was pushed into villainy, Cruella appears to have always existed in a realm of, well, cruelty.

“I guess they were always scared that I’d be a psycho” Stone’s character reveals less than 30 seconds into the footage. Indeed, as she runs through oncoming traffic, waltzes around with a bottle of whiskey, burning fancy gala dresses a lá Hunger Games, this young Cruella feels decidedly unhinged — and eerily familiar.

It didn’t take long for fans to start feeling some “Joker” vibes. In fact, there were so many comparisons to the 2019 DC film starring Joaquin Phoenix that “Disney’s Joker” began trending on Twitter.


It has all the right elements, from the dialogue to the lighting to the evil cackle over the studio’s logo. Some are even anticipating “Cruella” is better than “Joker”:


That said, it seems fans aren’t totally sure if they want another Joker-esque story. Although Phoenix’s performance was lauded, “Joker” got a lukewarm reception from fans and critics alike, with many questioning the choice to try and make one of DC’s most iconic villains sympathetic — or why Disney is doing the solo film at all.


And remember, a trailer is not a film.

“Cruella” will take place in ’70s-era London, square in the punk rock fashion rising (as clearly exemplified by the movie’s poster). Apparently, before she was Cruella DeVil, she was just Estella, an ambitious young woman looking to make it in the fashion industry. But as she tells us herself, she always viewed the world a bit differently than everyone else.

This Cruella always had an appetite for chaos, eventually finding her a pair of friends in young thieves, Joel Fry and Paul Walter Hauser’s respective Jasper and Horace. But Estella’s “different” view of the world inevitably finds her squaring off against Emma Thompson’s Baroness von Hellman, a fashion legend, leading Estella to embrace her wicked side and become the terrifying Cruella.

“Cruella” will premiere on May 28th, 2021.


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