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Disney Releases Final Trailer for Live-Action ‘Beauty and the Beast’

Disney released a final trailer today for its live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast. Directed by Bill Condon, the film, which is based on a public domain fairytale, will open in U.S. theaters on March 17.

The studio is promoting the film on Facebook with the tagline, “Rediscover a tale as old as time,” but “a tale as long as time” might be even more appropriate. The length of the new film has been padded out by nearly 40 minutes, expanding from a disciplined 84 minutes for the original to 123 minutes for the upcoming edition. Last year’s Jungle Book remake was similarly fluffed up by around half an hour.

The trailer, which summarizes the plot of the original animated version, doesn’t reveal the new scenes and songs that have most likely been added to justify the extra 40 minutes, but if the additions to The Jungle Book were any indication, it’s hard to improve on something that already works.

Then again, Disney isn’t revamping its entire library as a fussy exercise for adults to compare and contrast versions. Rather, the studio hopes that young children who’ve had little to no exposure to the animated films will embrace these cg/vfx-driven updates as the definitive Disney versions. It’s a savvy marketing trick: parents and kids can bond over the same set of characters and stories, even if they experienced different versions of the films as children.

The cg character animation and visual effects in Beauty and the Beast is being handled by a variety of studios including Digital Domain, Framestore, Method Studios, and Lola Visual Effects.

  • bends

    Will the writers and storyboard artists of the 1991 version be getting any residuals from this? Most of this trailer’s scenes, dialogue and even camera angles come right out of that film….

    • Corwin Haught

      Animation Guild members do not get residuals in general. The union traded that for a pension plan some time ago.

  • Dan

    This looks so tacky.

  • Andrew Kieswetter

    Even though I think a live action/cg remake is unnecessary,It actually looks great.

  • mashed potato

    There’ll then be a live-action Aladdin, Little Mermaid, Mulan, Pocahontas, Lion King, etc. In 10 or so years, there’ll be animated versions of the live-action movies, maybe in immersive VR. And the cycle continues the following 10 years with another live-action with interpretive-dance robots.

    I’m in the camp that theorizes this as Diz’s tactic to extend the copyrights of their specific version and visuals, perpetually keeping them out of public domain.

    That said, I’m morbidly curious about a Bambi and Robin Hood remake.

    • AmidAmidi

      Stories like Aladdin, Little Mermaid and Mulan are already in the public domain. You could develop a project from that source material if you wanted, and plenty of projects are already built around those stories. Same with Pocahontas, which is based on a historical figure.

      • mashed potato

        I’m aware of all the source materials, I was referring to exclusive Disney-fied additions. The songs, the side characters.

        Pretty sure Dan Lill Havfrue did not have a talking crab with a jamaican accent, and I see that as something Diz wants to reaffirm ownership of, through remakes and updates. Only Disney’s version will have Sebastian; once the animated movie’s copyright reaches expiry, a live action remake at the 11th hour basicly extends that exclusivity, and on and on.

  • …I’d be more interested in a live action/animated version of Oliver & Co. actually.

  • Avi Blyer

    I would love to see a live actionanimated version of Song of the South!
    hmm, on second thought …

    • Too Many Cooks

      It’s released as a double-feature with the remake of Dumbo.

  • Capital_7

    As lovely as she is, is there any movie star as boring to see on screen as Emma Watson?

  • cartoonguy

    Do they really think kids haven’t seen the originals, though? When I taught elementary school (which was 2013-2016) those kids were well versed in most of the 1990s Disney classics. Mostly because their parents were raised on ’em and wanted to expose their kids to them. This feels like nothing more than an expensive cash grab by a highly risk-averse studio (by the people who bought Star Wars, Marvel, etc).

  • Too Many Cooks

    I’ve said it many, many times, but I’ll say it once more. I was greatly looking forward to this movie as someone who adores the Beauty and the Beast stage show, and I lost all interest when I found out that none of the songs written for the stage show would be used. “Home,” “Me,” and “If I Can’t Love Her” are all great songs that I would’ve loved to see put on film. Heck, in my mind, adding the songs from the stage show was the only justification in making a new movie, since my one problem with the 1991 movie was literally just “I wish I could hear more Menken songs.”

    I get that I’m not representative of this movie’s target audience, but talking about what could’ve been feels cathartic. I’m probably going to see this movie eventually, but not while it’s in the theaters.

  • Andrew Kieswetter

    I’m really interested in seeing live action/animated versions of Robin Hood,The Fox & The Hound,The Rescuers,and The Black Cauldron