Once upon a time, in a faraway land, Disney released the first magical teaser trailer for its upcoming live-action retelling of its animated classic movie Beauty and the Beast.
When I was growing up, Beauty and the Beast was one of my favorite fairy tales, and I absolutely loved Disney’s take on the story made popular in 1756 by Madame Leprince de Beaumont. So imagine my delight when it was announced that -- after Maleficent and Cinderella -- Disney would tackle a live-action version of their 1991 animated classic next.
Directed by Bill Condon (The Fifth Estate, Mr. Holmes) from a screenplay by Evan Spiliotopoulos (Hercules, The Huntsman: Winter’s War) and Stephen Chbosky (The Perks of Being a Wallflower) based on the 1991 script by Linda Woolverton (Maleficent), the movie stars Emma Watson as Belle, Dan Stevens as the Beast, Luke Evans as Gaston, Kevin Kline as Maurice, Josh Gad as Lefou, Ewan McGregor as Lumiere, Stanley Tucci as Maestro Cadenza, Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Plumette, Audra McDonald as Madame Garderobe, Ian McKellen as Cogsworth and Emma Thompson as Mrs. Potts.
Although we don't get to see the Beast yet (and that's a bit of a bummer), we do have our first peek at his castle and at Belle when we see her reflection as she slowly reaches to peer at the enchanted rose beneath the glass. We even hear Lumiere (McGregor) and Cogsworth (McKellen) wondering if she’s "the one." Also, the use of the music from the opening prologue and “Tale as Old as Time” hit all the right nostalgic notes. I had chills.
Here’s an official synopsis:
Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” is a live-action re-telling of the studio’s animated classic which refashions the classic characters from the tale as old as time for a contemporary audience, staying true to the original music while updating the score with several new songs. “Beauty and the Beast” is the fantastic journey of Belle, a bright, beautiful and independent young woman who is taken prisoner by a beast in his castle. Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff and learns to look beyond the Beast’s hideous exterior and realize the kind heart and soul of the true Prince within.
Award-winning composer Alan Menken has been tapped to write the score (Menken won two Oscars for the 1991 animated movie: Best Original Score and Best Song) and the live-action film will feature new recordings of the original songs as well as brand-new ones.
Beauty and the Beast will open in movie theaters on March 17, 2017.