Yesterday, Variety informed us that Luke Evans — aka Bard the Bowman in The Hobbit flicks — will play Gaston in Disney’s live-action version of Beauty and the Beast. Today, The Hollywood Reporter reveals that Dan Stevens — aka Cousin Matthew Crawley on Downton Abbey — will play the Beast. Meh. (Emma Watson is set to play Belle.)
Dan Stevens is not the most exciting choice. Or maybe that’s just because Matthew was kind of boring on Downton Abbey. Dan Stevens is probably a fine choice. The real problem is that in the animated version, The Beast was cute. Sure, he was supposed to be terrifying, but he was actually really attractive, like a charming oversized puppy lion.
And then when he turned into a human, it was basically a downgrade.
So it’s not as important for us to know who is playing the Beast as it is for us to know what the Beast will look like. It’s essential to the tale as old as time! He’d better be an adorable, cuddly Frankenbison. He’d better not look like this:
That’s Ron Perlman in the 1987 CBS TV series Beauty and the Beast. Not quite as adorable as the animated version.