When Dan Stevens didn’t re-up his contract with “Downton Abbey,” departing via fatal car crash and leaving behind Lady Mary and his infant son, people thought he was crazy. Well, he’s been cast as the male lead in Disney’s live musical interpretation of “Beauty and the Beast,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. Who’s got the last laugh now?
He will play The Beast/Prince opposite Emma Watson as Belle. The Reporter previous reported Emma Thompson is currently in talks to play Mrs. Potts, in the film. (Thompson in anything is brilliant casting! Did you watch he Mrs. Lovett in “Sweeney Todd”? To die for. No, really.) To watch a video from the concert performance, click here.
Stage veteran Luke Evans is joining the project as Gaston. The rest of the casting is TBA.
According to The Reporter, the film is part of Disney’s plan of taking its animated classics and brushing them up for a 21st century live-action makeover.
“Cinderella,” opening March 13, features Downton Abbey’s recently married Lady Rose (Lily James) in the title role and kitchen maid Daisy Mason (Sophie McShera) as one of the evil step-sisters. How’s that for a change of roles from kind and gentle to snarky.
Today’s (March 8) NYTimes has an article about the female “Downton” connection as well. To read it, click here.
The trailer looks very enticing. To watch it, click here.