The Real Reason Emma Watson Didn’t Star In La La Land

Emma Stone and Dan Stevens Beauty and the Beast

At this point, it's a well-known fact that Emma Watson was originally under consideration for the role that just won Emma Stone an Oscar, the lead in La La Land. Now, The reason she didn't take the role, however, has been much less clear. Now, the actress has set the record straight on why the role had to go to the other Emma. Watson had already committed to do Beauty and the Beast and simply wasn't able to fit La La Land into that demanding schedule.

I knew I had horse training, I knew I had dancing, I knew I had three months of singing ahead of me, and I knew I had to be in London to really do that. And this wasn't a movie I could just kind of parachute into. I knew I had to do the work, and I had to be where I had to be. So scheduling conflict-wise, it just didn't work out.

In their own way, Emma Watson's comments to Entertainment Weekly would seem to fit with other things that have been said previously. Sources had indicated that Emma Watson had asked that La La Land rehearsals take place in London, and while such a request was previously without context, it now seems that the reason for it was simply that Watson had to be in London due to her Beauty and the Beast commitments, and as such there simply wasn't any other way she was going to be able to be in the movie. Such things couldn't be done, which meant the schedule just wasn't going to work.

Scheduling is the great equalizer when it comes to film. As busy as many actors keep themselves, they simply can't be in more than one place at the same time. Sometimes studios are able to schedule movies around the availability of actors if there's somebody the company thinks is important enough, but those instances are few and far between. With movies like La La Land that are incredibly tiny compared to major titles like Beauty and the Beast, studios simply can't afford to wait. More often, as happened here, a commitment to one movie means that making another is off the table.

With La La Land going on to win numerous Oscars, including a Best Actress nod for Emma Stone, and very nearly Best Picture (they almost took the award home anyway) there will always be "what if" questions regarding Emma Watson's potential performance. While Watson may not have an Academy Award, there's a very good chance she's got a huge hit on her hands as Beauty and the Beast is expected to have a massive opening weekend. We'll find out just how big when the movie hits theaters on Friday.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.