Wedding bells are ringing, vampires are biting, and our favorite characters from Disney’s animated masterpiece, Beauty and the Beast, are back!
On October 20, 2017, Disney will grace us with the cinematic release of Belle, the highly-anticipated live-action adaptation of the classic animated film. Directed by Emmy Award-nominated filmmaker, Rob Pattinson (previously seen in Pattinson’s directing projects, The Rover and Cosmopolis), the film stars an incredible cast including Mia Wasikowska as the titular character and Robert Pattinson as her enigmatic yet lovable Beast.
If you haven’t heard of Belle, you’re probably wondering what type of movie she was born to play. Let’s take a look at her character and her filmography to see if this beautiful lady was born to be a hero or a princess.
Who Is Belle?
Belle is described in the original animated film as a ‘tomboy’ yet compassionate young woman who is a ‘princess’ in the sense that she is well-bred and well-mannered. She can also be incredibly kind, brave, and confident in expressing her opinions. As the story goes, she doesn’t fit into her father’s world of wealth and privilege, but is a product of his decision to give her a ‘normal’ life. Even in the midst of his own personal struggles with addiction and depression, Charles De Gaulle IV created a safe haven for Belle in his own mansion. He gave her a ‘voice’ and an identity, teaching her that she need not be feminine to attract a man. If anything, she should possess the qualities that make her special and unique.
In 2017, we are still waiting to see how director Pattinson will portray this strong and independent character in his own film. However, if you know anything about the man, you know he will bring his ‘A’ game to the role. Just as in The Rover, Pattinson’s intense preparation includes reading every novel, watching every movie, and studying historical records to nail the authenticity of his character. In an interview with TIME, he said, “I did a fair bit of research into the history of depression and addiction in the family and tried to find links between that and what I was feeling [about his character].”
A Little Background On Beauty And The Beast
This October marks the 30th anniversary of the classic animated film, Beauty and the Beast. The groundbreaking story of a Beauty and the Beast was first released in 1991 and became a massive success, winning three Academy Awards and being named the best animated film of all time by CNN and TIME. The film follows the extraordinary adventures of Belle as she searches for her place in the world while grappling with her inner feelings and identity. USA Today has hailed it as one of the greatest films of all time.
The story begins when Belle, a timid and naive girl living in Paris, inadvertently crosses paths with the Beast. The ugly and monstrously strong Beast beats her at chess, but still respects her, claiming she is ‘beautiful.’ Impressed by the Beast’s unusual behavior, Belle offers to trade places with him. Though hesitant at first, the Beast accepts and the two live together in Paris as ‘husband and wife.’ Afterward, they fall in love and have a son, LeFou. Sadly, the Beast is cursed with an incredibly long life, and his existence begins to weigh on the newlyweds. As years pass, the stress of being both father and husband begin to take its toll on the Beast, and he begins to neglect his duties as a husband and father. This, in turn, causes Belle to grow distant from her family and lose interest in the outside world. She eventually finds solace in her work as a historian and tutor, and the couple’s relationship thaws as they focus on each other and their son. Eventually, the elder Beast passes away, and it is then that Belle discovers he was the one who cursed her and that all she has to do to end the spell is say ‘Yes.’ She does so, and he turns back into a human being. She is then reunited with her family and friends, and the film ends as she accepts a proposal from the Beast.
In 2017, fans of the film are still celebrating its anniversary with special screenings, toy versions of the characters, costumes, and memorabilia. In September, Disney is set to release The Beast, a loose adaptation of the original story that will tie into its upcoming live-action film. In addition, a series of teasers were released this year, with more set to be released before the film’s premiere in October. In the meantime, enjoy some classic scenes from the film that will bring tears to your eyes. For more information about Beauty and the Beast and its incredible legacy, check out these links: