‘Beauty and the Beast’ Featurette Asks the Question: Why Remake Something That’s Perfect?
There}s one big question surrounding the upcoming live-action take on Disney’s Beauty and the Beast: Why remake something that’s considered by most to be Disney’s most perfect movie? We can write all the Stockholm syndrome thinkpieces that we want, but Beauty and the Beast still holds up as one of the studio’s animation and storytelling high points during the Disney renaissance of the ’90s (which includes The Lion King, Pocahontas, Aladdin, and Mulan). So why bother to even try to come close?
In a new featurette, the cast and crew behind the live-action Beauty and the Beast explains just that. It’s an “updated” version for the 21st century, which expands on the characters and story of the original on top of a backdrop of baroque, dense animation. Belle’s character in particular is getting an update: instead of her only trait being liking books and her father getting the crazy inventor gene, in this version Belle gets those engineering traits herself.
Plus, it just wouldn’t be Beauty and the Beast without the music. It looks like this movie is doing every classic song from the 1991 cartoon (crossing my fingers for a totally off-the-wall great rendition of “Gaston”), and it also seems like at least a few scenes will be completely shot-for-shot. There’s that iconic shot where Belle and the Beast look at each other before descending the ballroom stairs, and that sweeping hillside vista while she sings her reprise that are both taken directly from the original. If anything, this movie will be cool to see just to watch the cartoon scenes we all know so well play out in a real-life setting.
Beauty and the Beast opens in theaters March 17.