Beauty and the Beast Special Coming to ABC

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On December 15th, an animated-live action hybrid performance of Beauty and the Beast will air on ABC entitled Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration.  It is slated to stream on Disney+ the day after, December 16th.  This performance will mirror 2019’s The Little Mermaid which also mixed animation from the 1989 film and live-action.  This event will honor the 30th Anniversary of Beauty and the Beast.

The event boasts big names in the title roles in Josh Groban in the Beast and H.E.R. as Belle. Both are acclaimed singers in their particular genres.  Josh Groban, a Tony nominee, has also performed on Broadway in The Great Comet and the upcoming Sweeney Todd. H.E.R. is an R&B superstar. Other names include: Joshua Henry, a Broadway staple, as Gaston, Comedian David Alan Grier as Cogsworth, Emmy, Tony, Oscar, and Grammy Award Winner, Rita Moreno as the narrator, Comedian Martin Short as Lumiere, Broadway Star Jon Jon Briones as Maurice, Country Singer Shania Twain as Mrs. Potts, Rizwan Manji of Schitt’s Creek as LeFou, and Leo Abelo Perry as Chip.

Jon M. Chu, who directed In the Heights and the upcoming Wicked will executive produce the special with Hamish Hamilton, who directed The Little Mermaid Live, will serve as director.

Beauty and the Beast was released in 1991 with a score and songs written Disney greats, Howard Ashman and Alan Menken.  The movie spawned the first Broadway show that Disney produced opening in 1994 and ran on Broadway until 2007.  The soundtrack for the Broadway play also included some new songs written by Tim Rice with music by Alan Menken.  In 2017, Disney released the live-action version of the 1991 movie with Emma Watson starring as Belle.  The live-action version included some new songs also written by Tim Rice.  It is unclear if some of the songs from the Broadway show or live-action version will be featured in this special. I hope that they add the song “Evermore” from the live-action version as it would be perfect for Josh Groban’s vocal range.

Will you be watching Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration? Let us know in the comments below.

Source: Playbill


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