As anyone who has recently been on social media knows, Disney will be producing a live-action version of their classic film Beauty and the Beast and will star Harry Potter actress Emma Watson as the titular character of Belle. This statement confirms that the continuing trend of rebooting classic fairytale stories is going nowhere.
Watson confirmed her involvement with Beauty and the Beast when she took to Facebook to make an official statement on the matter. This past Monday morning the actress posted to her page that she was very excited to finally tell all of her followers the exciting news. In her post, Watson revealed that Beauty and the Beast was a very important part of her childhood and was completely ecstatic that she will be the one to recreate such a vital memory. The star also made note that she simply cannot wait to dance to the likes of “Be Our Guest” and sing along to the tunes of “Something There” in the film.
The latter half of Watson’s statement in which she refers to the names of the songs from the classic animated Beauty and the Beast film insinuate that the new adaptation will feature the same exact score. This is a very interesting fact as there has yet to be a direct reenactment of a classic Disney film. A great many of them have been revived in a live-action setting, but with vastly different storylines and often no singing or musical numbers.
Snow White and the Huntsman and Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland are both reboots of the famous classic tales, but neither of them featured the film’s characters belting out a tune and often provided a much darker and more mature theme and storyline as opposed to the family-friendly Disney cartoons. Judging solely from Watson’s Facebook post, audiences may literally see the classic Beauty and the Beast cartoon performed by live actors on film.
If Hollywood is to bring an animated film directly to life, Beauty and the Beast is the one to choose. The classic cartoon was adapted to the Broadway stage a few years after the success of the film and still remains one of the top ten longest-running Broadway shows. The music, staging and storyline of Beauty and the Beast lend themselves over very well to live theater. One can only hope that it will lend itself over equally as well to a live film version.
Watson also states in her Facebook post that it is time for her to jump into some singing lessons. This is an additionally interesting statement as it is true that the mainstream audience has never actually heard the 24-year-old actress sing. To live music buffs and musical theatre fans in particular, there is undoubtedly much skepticism to come regarding the quality of Watson’s singing voice. One must take into consideration that Watson would most likely not have been hired for the film, which has been in developmental processes since 2011, if the studios did not feel she was more than adequate for the role.
It will still be quite some time before the live-action version of Beauty and the Beast makes its way into theaters as filming is not scheduled to commence until the end of the year. One must wonder which classic fairytale will be rebooted next.
By Cody Collier
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