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Disney Fast-Tracks Live-Action 'Cruella' Movie

Returning once more to its vault of animated classics, Disney is reportedly fast-tracking "Cruella," a live-action film starring the legendary villain from "101 Dalmatians."

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the studio has hired "Fifty Shades of Grey" writer Kelly Marcel to tackle the script, which will presumably do for the cigarette-smoking Cruella de Vil what 2014's "Maleficent" did for Sleeping Beauty's nemesis.

Introduced in Dodie Smith's 1956 novel "The Hundred and One Dalmatians," the crazed and cunning Cruella gained iconic status with Disney's 1961 animated film, which based her mannerisms on actress Tallulah Bankhead. Glenn Close played the character in Disney's 1996 live-action version and its sequel "102 Dalmatians."

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"Cruella" joins a growing slate of live-action films based on Disney's animated classics: 2014's "Maleficent," this year's "Cinderella," and the upcoming "Jungle Book," "Alice Through the Looking Glass," "Beauty and the Beast" and "Dumbo."

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