Emma Watson Cast as Belle in Live-Action ‘Beauty and the Beast’

By January 26, 2015
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One of Disney’s modern classic animated films is 1991’s Beauty and the Beast, based on the French fairy tale by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont. Upon release, it was highly critically acclaimed, garnering a very rare “A+” rating from CinemaScore, and very famously becoming the first animated film to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture. It’s now Disney’s intent to create a live-action adaptation that also draws from the Broadway musical, and it seems that Disney has found their leading lady.

According to Variety, the one and only Emma Watson (the Harry Potter film series) has been cast as Belle, the young and adventurous bookworm who warms the heart of the cursed prince who was transformed into the eponymous “Beast.” Watson, who in recent years has become relatively selective of the acting work she undertakes, seemed highly enthused about the prospect of taking this role on when she announced it herself via her Facebook page:

I’m finally able to tell you… that I will be playing Belle in Disney’s new live-action Beauty and the Beast! It was such a big part of my growing up, it almost feels surreal that I’ll get to dance to ‘Be Our Guest’ and sing ‘Something There’. My six year old self is on the ceiling – heart bursting. Time to start some singing lessons. I can’t wait for you to see it.

The script for the film has been written by Evan Spiliotipoulos, with a rewrite by Steve Chbosky, based on the animated film’s screenplay by Linda Wolverton. The live-action Beauty and the Beast is expected to go into production later this year, but Disney has yet to provide any solid release information. For more on Beauty and the Beast as it develops, keep an eye on GeekNation!

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Chris Clow
As a former comics retailer at a store in the Pacific Northwest, Chris Clow is an enormous sci-fi, comics, and film geek. He is a freelance contributor, reviewer, podcaster, and overall geek to GeekNation, Batman-On-Film.com, The Huffington Post, and Movies.com. He also hosts the monthly Comics on Consoles broadcast and podcast. Check out his blog, and follow him on Twitter @ChrisClow.