Cruella star confirms his character is ‘officially queer’

Cruella John McCrea

Cruella star John McCrea has confirmed that his character in the film is queer, saying he “lives by his own rules”.

The actor, who plays Artie in the hotly-anticipated Disney film, made the revelation in an interview with Attitude.

“It depends on who you’re asking I suppose – but for me, yes, it’s official: he’s queer,” McCrea explained.

“But we don’t see him falling in love; there’s no social aspect to the character. It’s not beating you on the head with a stick. But his lifestyle is fabulous, he loves his life and it was so fun to play him.”

When asked if Artie was written as queer or if he simply decided to play the character that way, McCrea said: “In one of the original scripts he was a drag queen, so I think he was always intended to be queer-representing I suppose, or somehow a member of the LGBTQ community.

“I imagine that was always the case.”

John McCrea plays ‘well-adjusted, happy’ queer character in Cruella

Elsewhere in the interview, McCrea reflected on the significance of having a casually queer character in a big budget Disney film.

“If I had a character growing up like that to watch on the screen I would’ve fallen in love,” McCrea said.

“Also, with the idea that he’s completely well-adjusted, very happy, and has a real lust for life. Those are things I’d find so exciting.

“He lives by his own rules. A wonderful line he says is: ‘Normal is the harshest insult of all.’ A wonderful mentality to have.”

Cruella, starring Emma Stone as the titular character, was originally supposed to be released on 23 December 2020, but it was ultimately delayed until 28 May 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Emma Thompson, Joel Fry, Paul Walker Hauser, Emily Beecham, Kirby Howell-Baptiste and Mark Strong also star in the film, which will be released as a premium title on Disney+.

The legendary Disney villain was previously portrayed by Glenn Close in the 1996 live-action film 101 Dalmatians and its 2000 sequel 102 Dalmatians.