Disney has been all about live-action remakes in recent years. After the fiscal success of Angelina Jolie's Maleficent, the House of Mouse began producing live-action versions of classic cartoons at an impressively hurried pace. We've since seen Cinderella, Jungle Book, with the next blockbuster being Beauty and the Beast, starring Harry Potter actress Emma Watson. While early footage for the movie looks stunning and anticipation is at an all-time high, it seems that some of the original cast members aren't too thrilled. Case in point: the incomparable and legendary Angela Lansbury.
The five time Tony Award winner recently spoke to the good folks at Entertainment Weekly about the original Beauty and the Beast's anniversary. Eventually the conversation turned to the live-action remake, and Angela Lansbury got blunt about her trepidation and confusion regarding the project.
I was a bit taken aback, naturally. I thought, 'Why? Why are we doing this over again?' But I guess, I don't know why they're doing it. But they are, and it will be interesting to see what they do with it... I don't quite know why they're doing it. I can't understand what they're going to do with it that will be better than what we've already done. And how they're doing it live --- it may turn out to be very entertaining and wonderful. It won't be like the cartoon that we did, but it's a good story --- it's one of the famous fairy stories that is known worldwide by children. Therefore, why not? I don't blame them for doing it. But, I'm sorry, they're not really on our territory. We did it as cartoon characters, and that is quite different from live actors.
Jessica Fletcher just dropped the mic. Clearly Angela Lansbury doesn't think Beauty and the Beast needs to be touched, and she's not shy about voicing her concern.
The 91 year old actress definitely recognizes how significant the original Beauty and the Beast is. The 1991 movie became the first animated movie to be nominated for a Best Picture Oscar, and was also the first Disney movie to be adapted into a Broadway musical. Winning two Academy Awards, the movie has become a cultural staple, cementing it as one of the top Disney movies of all time. So why mess with it?
Angela Lansbury might not have noticed, but nostalgia is one of the biggest trends in Hollywood right now. Tons of 80's and 90's franchises are being rebooted lately, as millennials take a trip down memory lane to a simpler time. Plus, the new Beauty and the Beast appears to be following its source material very closely, which will honor the original and engage in adults who watched it on VHS back in the day.
Do you think Angela Lansbury is right about Beauty and the Beast? Or are you excited to see the classic in live-action? Sound off in the comments below.