Following the huge worldwide success of Maleficent last weekend, Disney has announced, via Variety, that Bill Condon will direct their live action adaptation of Beauty and the Beast. Disney’s 1991 animated feature version of Beauty and the Beast grossed more than $375 million worldwide, launched a Broadway play and became one of a very few select animated films to ever receive a Best Picture nomination at the Oscars. Evan Spiliotopoulos is writing the script, and although the Variety article says “the plot details are unknown at this time,” I’d say it’s a fair bet that the plot details are exactly what you would expect them to be. This is Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, not Lars Von Trier’s Beauty and the Beast.
Bill Condon is best known for directing the hit musical adaptation of Dreamgirls, as well as writing Chicago back in 2002. So far, these live action takes on classic Disney fairy tales have abandoned the musical aspects of their animated counterparts, but isn’t the music from the late, great Howard Ashman and Alan Menken the best part of Beauty and the Beast? Why not use the music for a live-action musical version? The hiring of Condon, best known for working on two different (and successful) modern musicals might suggest Disney is thinking of going that route. If they do, then I’m ten times more excited for this project than I would be otherwise.
Would you like to see a more musical live-action Beauty and the Beast? Let us know in the comments below!