Disney continues its streak of releasing live action versions of their classic animated hits with “Beauty And The Beast.”
The film stars Emma Watson (Harry Potter series, The Perks Of Being A Wallflower) and Dan Stevens (Downton Abbey, Legion) in the title roles and both are perfectly cast. Those who might have been worried about Watson’s ability to sing can rest assured she does a fine job. Stevens is also on point as the Beast. Obviously the handsome actor is well suited to the role of the Prince, but he is formidable as the Beast as well, bringing just the right amount of ferocity when needed.
The rest of the cast is rounded out with some of the best actors working today: Emma Thompson (Mrs. Potts), Ewan McGregor (Lumiere), Ian McKellen (Cogsworth), Kevin Kline (Maurice), Luke Evans (Gaston) and Josh Gad (LeFou). Add to those a-listers Stanley Tucci and Audra McDonald and you have one of the best casts assembled in recent memory.
“Beauty And The Beast” was directed by Bill Condon (Dreamgirls). Condon, who is no stranger to directing musicals, does an amazing job of keep the comedy light and the suspense high while also weaving in the many musical set pieces. If you are a fan of the 1991 Disney animated feature then you will not be disappointed. Every aspect of that film is on display plus a few extra layers as well.
“Beauty And The Beast” is yet another jewel in Disney’s live action crown. It is a wonder to behold and I cannot wait to see what they do next.
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Pat Francis currently hosts the popular comedy/music podcast “Rock Solid,” called 1 of the 8 great music podcasts to put in your ears by USA Today and featuring artists such as Melissa Etheridge, Sammy Hagar and Susanna Hoffs. His frequent appearances on Jimmy Pardo’s top rated podcast “Never Not Funny” are fan favorites. Pat began his entertainment career as a stand-up comic in Chicago, IL. After touring the country and performing in 42 states at comedy clubs and colleges, he relocated to Los Angeles, CA. There he appeared as a comedian on Comedy Central, AMC, the UCB and is a yearly regular at the San Francisco Sketchfest. For the past 5 years he has also served as Co-Host of the yearly event Pardcast-A-Thon which to date has raised over 700,000 for Smile Train. When not entertaining people in person he also makes his living as a Story Producer for reality television programs. It is also important to know that Pat is a monkey in a human mask.