Sir Ian McKellen has already been an ancient wizard in the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movies, as well as Magneto in the X-Men films, so his geek cred his pretty high already (also, let’s not forget an Oscar-nominated performance as James Whale, the director of the original Universal Frankenstein and Bride of Frankenstein.) What’s left after that? How about playing a walking/talking/singing clock? Yup, the legendary British actor is joining the cast of Disney’s live-action retelling of their classic animated musical Beauty and the Beast, and McKellen will portray Cogsworth, the Prince’s loyal butler who gets transformed into a clock when a witch places a curse on the castle, transforming the Prince into a beast, and his entire household staff into living pieces of furniture.
Beauty and the Beast already has a stellar cast lined-up, with Downton Abbey’s Dan Stevens as the Beast, and Emma Watson as Belle. Joining them are Luke Evans as Gaston, Josh Gad as LeFou, Kevin Kline as Maurice, Emma Thompson as Mrs. Potts, and Broadway star Audra McDonald as Garderobe. The addition of acting royalty like McKellen is the icing on the cake for this already perfectly cast movie. Director Bill Condon is helming the movie, but before cameras roll on Beauty and the Beast, he has another film coming out later this year, also starring McKellen, called Mr. Holmes, about an elderly Sherlock Holmes solving a new mystery in his golden years. Now if they can only find a role for McKellen’s real life BFF Patrick Stewart as well, all will be right with the world. There has to be some piece of furniture left for him to play still, right??