Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, has always had a special place in the hearts of girls who grew up in the 90’s! We grew up with dreams of a chance-meeting with our Prince Charming, falling in love-at-first-sight & being swept off our feet… Being rescued from danger by a Fairy Godmother or a Knight in shining armor astride a white horse!

“Tale as old as time, true as it can be….” You all know the lyrics! 27 years after Disney melted our hearts they are preparing to do it again! This March 2017, Disney brings all those dreams to life with a live-action musical of ‘Beauty and the Beast’ starring the ever-feminine and true feminist Emma Watson as Belle the beauty and protagonist and Luke Evans, Hollywood’s dreamy blue-eyed-boy, as the beast.

Here are the 15 astonishing facts about the beauty and the beast.

  • Art director Brian McEntee color-keyed Belle so that she is the only person in her town who wears blue. This is symbolic of how different she is from everyone else around. Later, she encounters the Beast, another blue-eyes misfit, wearing blue.

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    Blue symbolized good in the film whereas red symbolized evil (the color of Gaston’s shirt is red, and the Beast wears a red cape before he begins to soften.)

  • In Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve’s “The Story of Beauty and the Beast,” – the original version of the tale – the prince was not turned into a beast for being selfish and unloving, but because he refused to marry his evil fairy godmother.

    Likewise, Beauty’s challenge in understanding the beast was not his volatile temperament but his stupidity, for in beast form he could not express himself.

  • Originally, the film was going to be more faithful to the original French fairy tale, which features a darker and more sinister theme; however, when Alan Menken and Howard Ashman joined the production, this idea was dropped.

  • The first stained-glass window seen in the prologue has the Latin phrase ‘Vincit Qui Se Vincit’, which means, in a subtle prefiguring of the arc of the whole story, ‘He conquers, who conquers himself.’

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  • The curse on Beast requires him to be worthy of pure love, without any emphasis on exterior beauty. In essence, the rose is the one living gatekeeper of this curse. When Belle accidentally comes across the torn portrait of Prince Adam (Beast in his human form), she tries to put it together to be able to figure out the face painted, but is distracted by the suddenly brighter light of the rose which is to make sure she doesn’t figure out the Beast’s true identity.

  • Belle’s love of reading is meant to be a sign of great intelligence, a trait that had previously not been shown in a Disney princess. The distinction is made glaringly obvious by the contrasting reactions she gets from the two male-leads. Gaston: “It’s not right for a woman to read. Soon she starts getting ideas, and thinking…”

    The Beast/Adam: “Could you read it again?” It is also a subtle hint to the movie’s message: “Don’t judge a book by its cover”.

  • The song ‘Be Our Guest’ was originally supposed to be sung to Maurice instead of Belle, but the scriptwriter Bruce Woodside pointed out that the song was in the wrong place because Maurice was not the focus of the story, and it made no sense to waste such a wonderful song on a secondary character.

  • The library in the Beast’s castle bears a strong resemblance to the Oval Reading Room of the Richelieu Building at the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris, others feel it is similar to the Admont Abbey Library, Austria.

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  • Robby Benson’s voice was altered by the growls of real panthers and lions so that it is virtually unrecognizable. His voice is not changed on the original motion picture soundtrack, which is why as the prince (whose voice-over thoughts are heard in “Something There That Wasn’t There Before”) his voice is different. Did you know that Jackie Chan performed the voice acting and singing for the Beast in the Chinese (Mandarin) dub of the film?

  • The finale dance between Belle and the Prince is actually reused animation from the finale dance between Princess Aurora and Prince Phillip in Sleeping Beauty.

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  • The smoke seen during the beast’s transformation at the end is actually real smoke, not animated. It was originally used in The Black Cauldron (1985) and was re-used for Beauty and the Beast.

  • The majority of the sculptures seen in the castle are different sketches and earlier versions of the Beast.

    Glen Keane, the supervising animator on the Beast, created his own hybrid beast by combining the mane of a lion, the beard and head structure of a buffalo, the tusks and nose-bridge of a wild boar, the heavily muscled brow of a gorilla, the legs and tail of a wolf, and the big and bulky body of a bear. He also has blue eyes, the one physical feature that does not change whether he is a beast or a human.

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  • When Paige O’Hara was auditioning, a bit of her hair flew in her face and she tucked it back. The animators liked her charming gesture so much; they put it in the movie.

  • It was lyricist and executive producer Howard Ashman who came up with the idea of turning the enchanted objects into living creatures with unique personalities. A song sung by the enchanted objects entitled “Human Again” was cut before production started. The song was later added to the Disney on Ice and theatrical productions and was recorded and animated for the 2002 IMAX re-release. It was also added to the Platinum Edition released on October 8th 2002, making the movie a bit longer.

  • Apparently, the directors hadn’t planned on Cogsworth being so knowledgeable about ~romantic~ gestures. You know that scene where the Beast asks Cogsworth and Lumiere about a special thing he could do for Belle, and Cogsworth responds, “Well, there’s the usual things: flowers, chocolates, promises you don’t intend to keep.”

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    Turns out the man who voiced Cogsworth, David Ogden Stiers, actually improvised that line and the directors liked it so much they kept it in. Lumiere suggests it should be more personal and that they should stop treating her as a prisoner and instead; a guest thus the Beast gives Belle the library.

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Tushnaa Ginwala

A self-taught lady who has a decade of experience in Film Making, Graphic Design, Content Creation & Digital Media Marketing.
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