Cruella de Vil: Possibly the most popular Disney villainess as, for all her evil intent against the Dalmatian puppies, she has such a fallible and over-the-top manner. Her distinctive black/white hairstyle, her sharp cheekbones and her effected manner (punctuated with help from her cigarette holder) makes her just the most dastardly daaahling. Luckily, aside from official outfits and accessories, there are plenty of Cruellla lookalikes to be spotted on the market.
Maleficent : Although the villainess in the Sleeping Beauty ballet was a wicked fairy called Carabosse, Disney’s Maleficent is a full-on evil fairy sorceress with the ability to shape-shift (not an effect easily achieved through the medium of simple costume). It is often thought that she and Cruella share relations as they have similar facial structure (albeit Maleficent is a little more greeny-blue). The black robes and horned headdress exude evility and interest in this villainess has been renewed now Angelia Jolie has contributed her live action interpretation (although at various times she brings a truly impressive wingspan and floor-sweeping cloak to the role which may prove impractical in a party environment) . Hire costumes are also available
The Wicked Queen : She’s usually just known as the Wicked Queen in Snow White – usually pictured in black balaclava-style headdress (pre-dating Maleficent’s, but then Maleficent added horns!).Her name is Grimhilde and she does a mean impression, both as a Wicked Queen seeking to have Snow meet with a sad accident in the woods and a devious hag, taking advantage of Snow’s good nature and fondness for apples. 2012 saw a couple of alternative interpretations of the Wicked Queen (though not from the Disney stable), but the Disney version remains the benchmark. Hire Costumes are available
Lady Tremaine: Cinderella’s mother in the Disney version. Oddly enough, most Brits, being familiar with the panto of the Cinders story, would see the Ugly Sisters as being more the villains of the piece, but for Disney it is Tremaine who is the problem. For those seeking to emulate her (and to be honest, we don’t get that many requests), the best way forward is a costume to suit an upper class haughty schemer. That’s an interesting challenge! Things might change with the 2015 live action Disney version of Cinderella, where Cate Blanchett is pencilled in to play Lady Tremaine.
Ursula: The wicked sea witch-cum-octopus in The Little Mermaid. Disney rather built up Ursula’s part from the sea-witch of the original Hans Christian Andersen story. With a light purple skin colour, white hair in tentacle-like curls and over-exaggerated eye-make-up (plus the tentacled lower body), she is a potentially interesting creative challenge for all those who want some originality. Costumes do exist (based on a black dress with long ‘tentacles’ around the hem) but may be more difficult to find because she is less well-known.
Queen of Hearts: The original Queen of Hearts in the Alice story and the 1958 Disney cartoon version spawned a later hybrid for the Tim Burton live-action Alice – The Queen of Hearts of ‘Wonderland’ and the Red Queen of ‘Looking Glass’ combined into a single despot, but the look of the costume is similar, even if Helena Bonham Carter’s shrunken head was quite novel. Props & Frocks stocks various Queen of Heart Costumes whether you are looking for a short and sexy number, or a longer dress that is suitable to wear for World Book day at school.
For reasons which we won’t speculate upon, there are far fewer male ‘human’ male villains than there are female equivalents. We say ‘human’ because there are a few animal evildoers – Scar the Lion from the Lion King, Shere Khan (Tiger) and Kaa (Snake) from the Jungle Book and King John (another Lion) from Robin Hood. There are, of course, evil henchmen (such as Cruella’s duo), but probably only because henchwomen don’t exist. Anyway, we have broadened out our remit to take in ‘live-action’ Disney films in addition to cartoons and here are a few of the most fiendish males.
Captain Hook (Peter Pan): Possibly the best known Disney villain and one who has a score to settle with the elfish Peter Pan. An upper class Englishman with a major chip on his shoulder and a fear of a certain crocodile, Hook is very distinctive in his red frock coat pirate outfit with its wide brimmed (and plumed) hat and his moustache just highlights the villainy. Aside from classic red, Hook outfits may be found in other colours because a) there have been other films about him (notably Spielberg’s Hook) and b) even a villain likes a change of look occasionally. We stock a wide range of fantastic quality hire costumes
Captain Barbarossa; The role of Barbossa varies over the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ series, but for the first film he’s the captain of The Black Pearl, a pirate ship with a crew sailing under a curse. As if being a pirate were not enough, he’s also been party to deposing and marooning our hero (?) (and the ship’s previous captain), Jack Sparrow. As one of three pirates appearing on this list, he is the one that most closely resembles the old school Blackbeard-style of classic pirate captain.
Long John Silver was a book character long before he was a Disney villain, yet it was the actor Robert Newton’s classic portrayal of Silver in Disney’s live-action Treasure Island that set the benchmark on pirate portrayal, most especially with the West Country derived accent, as in ‘Arrrrrr Jim Lad’. The only minor problem with a portrayal of Silver is the need to do it one-legged and use a crutch.
Jafar: With the Disney Aladdin being set in Arabia, Jafar takes the villain role similar to that of Abanazar in the British Aladdin pantomime, although he is titled the Royal Vizier of Agrabah. As such, his outfit is based on an elaborate blue robe with matching bejewelled turban. An important accessory is his staff topped with a serpent motif – the source of his magic power.
Doctor Facilier: One of the lesser known villains, but one with good costume potential and Halloween connections. The good (?) doctor is a master of Voodoo and the source of the curse which affects the Princess and the Frog. Essentially you may get all you need from a Baron Samedi-style costume, but the essential elements are a top hat (or similar) with a skull & crossbones design, a frock or tail suit in black or red and some tarot cards.
The Horned King: Another lesser known villain, this time from The Black Cauldron. That said, he has been compared with Darth Vader in his liking for masks and his manner of speaking. Essential elements here are red robes and large horns (bit of a clue in the name). The face is basically a skull-style mask with red glowing eyes, and there are several Halloween outfits offering this feature, so just team it with the outfit and you’re good to go (in a wicked way).
Shan Yu: It is a feature of most Disney villains (and villainesses) that they tend to be on the thin side. No such problem here as Shan Yu (from Mulan) is large, menacing and ruthless – a true bully boy. (If large villains are your thing, you might also look at Hades from Hercules). To get the Shun Yu look, you are probably best starting with a sumo (or fat) suit and accessorise with armour and weaponry as desired.
Darth Vader: As Star Wars has been acquired by the Disney franchise he is a prime contender for a Disney Villain. He wears black trousers, long sleeved tunic with chest piece, large black cloak, black gloves and a helmet. Costumes are available to purchase.
Darth Maul: Another star Wars villain appearing in Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace and Star Wars. The Clone Wars. He wears a black long sleeved wrap around, hooded, tunic top, belt, and black trousers. He also wears a rather distinctive mask that you could copy with face paint. Costumes are available to purchase