This week marks the 60th anniversary of the release of the animated Disney classic, 101 Dalmatians. It's a great film, but it's perhaps possible that Disney's live-action version from mid-'90s (one of the first in what would become a series of remakes) is even better. Although, if it is a better film, that's entirely due to the performance of Glenn Close as the villain Cruella de Vil. Close is pitch perfect in the role of the, and it turns out she can recreate the character anytime she'd like because she owns all of the original costumes she wore in the movie. Spoiler alert: those outfits weren't cheap.
Variety recently hosted a conversation between Glenn Close and actor Pete Davidson and the King of Staten Island star confessed that Close's 101 Dalmatians and the live-action sequel were two of his favorite movies growing up (I feel old). Close then revealed to Davidson that she still owns Cruella's entire wardrobe. It was part of her contract to play the part. Although the studio apparently tried to work around the deal, Close would not allow it. The actress says,
I got in my contract that I got to keep all my costumes that I wore in the movie. Then when they found out how expensive they were, they were unhappy that it was in my contract. They wanted to make another copy, another set, for me. I said no.
I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall in that conversation. Somebody at Disney is asking Glenn Close if they could just make her a new, slightly less expensive version of the outfits, but she's not having it. The contract says she gets the wardrobe, so she gets the wardrobe. And Disney just has to let it all go.
What's unclear is exactly what happened to the wardrobe. Glenn Close actually transformed herself into Cruella de Vil last October for Bette Midler's annual New York Restoration Project Halloween fundraiser, but she specifically listed where the elements of her costume came from, and none of it was actually part of her 101 Dalmatians wardrobe. Although the coat was part of her wardrobe from The Wife, so it seems Glenn Close is in the habit of making wardrobe one of her contract requirements. It's one way to keep your closet fresh.
One can only hope that Emma Stone had a similar clause in her contract. The actress will be the next live-action Cruella de Vil, in an origin story movie set to hit theaters later this year. We haven't seen what the new Cruella will look like beyond a couple of publicity shots, one assumes that the villain either has always had a top notch wardrobe or the movie is all about how she fell in love with fur coats.