Tale as old as time. True as it can be. We all know the lyrics to that Academy Award-winning titular song. We all know the animated story. Now, Disney has released the first trailer for Beauty and the Beast starring Emma Watson as strong and independent bookworm Belle and Dan Stevens as the ferocious Beast. The film isn’t due out in theaters until 2017, and we’ve seen a very quick snippet of the action through D23 and some social media, but now Disney has released their first teaser trailer for the live-action adaptation.
Check it out below.
As far as anticipation goes, Beauty and the Beast is the highest considering the film was a part of Disney’s animation renaissance that occurred in the 90s. The 1991 film was one of the first animated films nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. It was also known for its incredible score and songs, so director Bill Condon has his work cut out for him for this new version. But judging by those early reactions at D23 and how we were all gushing when we saw Luke Evans as the muscle-bound meathead hunter Gaston and Josh Gad as Le Fou Gaston’s diminutive and bumbling sidekick belt out a tune, I think Disney has a pretty solid hit on their hands. Their track record for turning their animated film library into live-action films has been one hit after another. Disney’s current filmmaking trend has been transforming their animated classics into successful live-action hits – as noted by Cinderella and most recently The Jungle Book. So it should be interesting how that all holds up in the coming years. If anything, the positive reaction and (possible) success of Beauty and the Beast will only give the studio more reason to continue to keep giving more live-action tellings or twists to their previously animated films.
The teaser trailer opens with a cold tour of Beast’s inner sanctum that is only lit by candle light. Each corridor is intricately detailed. You could tell that this castle was once very beautiful before it became aged and decayed thanks in part to a lack of upkeep and care. As we close in on a family portrait, we hear a snarl and suddenly claws clashing at the picture. Before the trailer ends, fans could possibly recognize the familiar question that Belle (Watson) asks before she enters the castle and the hilarious exchange that LumiÃ¨re (Ewan McGregor and Cogsworth (Ian McKellen) have when they realize they are in the presence of a young girl. Even the piano score sounds faintly familiar.
Now, there is no singing and that should be of some concern considering that was the animated film’s hook. Unlike Jon Favreau’s The Jungle Book, Beauty and the Beast will feature updated versions of songs from the animated original and several new ones as well.
Written by Evan Spiliotopoulos (Hercules, The Huntsman: Winter’s War) and Stephen Chbosky (Rent, Perks of Being a Wallflower), Beauty and the Beast is based on the fairy tale of the same name by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont. And just like Cinderella and The Jungle Book, the film touts an all-star cast that consists of Emma Thompson as Mrs. Potts, Kevin Kline as Maurice, Stanley Tucci as Cadenza, Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Babette, Audra McDonald as The Wardrobe, and more.
Beauty and the Beast opens in theaters on March 17, 2017.
Here’s the official plot 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. The film stars: Emma Watson as Belle; Dan Stevens as the Beast; Luke Evans as Gaston, the handsome, but shallow villager who woos Belle; Oscar® winner Kevin Kline as Maurice, Belle’s eccentric, but lovable father; Josh Gad as Lefou, Gaston’s long-suffering aide-de-camp; Golden Globe® nominee Ewan McGregor as Lumiere, the candelabra; Oscar nominee Stanley Tucci as Maestro Cadenza, the harpsichord; Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Plumette, the feather duster; six-time Tony Award® winner Audra McDonald as Madame Garderobe, the wardrobe; Oscar nominee Ian McKellen as Cogsworth, the mantel clock; and two-time Academy Award® winner Emma Thompson as the teapot, Mrs. Potts.
Directed by Oscar® winner Bill Condon from a screenplay by TBD based on the 1991 animated film, the film is produced by Mandeville Films’ David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman with eight-time Oscar-winning composer Alan Menken, who won two Academy Awards® (Best Original Score and Best Song) for the 1991 animated film, providing the score, which will include new recordings of the original songs written by Menken and Howard Ashman, as well as several new songs written by Menken and three-time Oscar winner Tim Rice. “Beauty and the Beast” will be released in U.S. theaters on March 17, 2017.