Angela Lansbury will always be a beloved part of the original Beauty and the Beast, as the talented actress brought her delightful tones to the teapot, Mrs. Potts. That same enthusiasm she brought to the role of Mrs. Potts isn't necessarily there for the new live action adaptation.
In a new interview with EW, Lansbury is asked about the new live action film, the latest in a series of live-action reimaginings of Disney classics.
"I was a bit taken aback, naturally. I thought, “Why? Why are we doing this over again?” But I guess, I don’t know why they’re doing it. But they are, and it will be interesting to see what they do with it. These are live action pieces and I know very well the actress who’s playing Mrs. Potts and she’s a very good friend of mine. It’s Emma Thompson."
She was then asked how she felt about someone else inhabiting the role of Mrs. Potts, where she again expressed surprise at Disney's decision to do a recreation of the original animated classic.
"Oh, absolutely. I don’t quite know why they’re doing it. I can’t understand what they’re going to do with it that will be better than what we’ve already done. And how they’re doing it live — it may turn out to be very entertaining and wonderful. It won’t be like the cartoon that we did, but it’s a good story — it’s one of the famous fairy stories that is known worldwide by children. Therefore, why not? I don’t blame them for doing it. But, I’m sorry, they’re not really on our territory. We did it as cartoon characters, and that is quite different from live actors."
The animated classics will always have a special place in fans hearts, but there is a whole generation that doesn't treasure those films as much as previous fans, and recreating those in live-action gives Disney the chance to reach a whole new audience. As for fans of the original, it's a new way to experience a classic story, and from a business point of view, it's a no-brainer.
Her shock is a bit surprising, though when people hear Mrs. Potts for the first time in the new adaptation, it will be a bit odd to hear someone else's voice.
Beauty and the Beast is the fantastic journey of Belle, a bright, beautiful and independent young woman who is taken prisoner by a beast in his castle. Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff and learns to look beyond the Beast’s hideous exterior and realize the kind heart and soul of the true Prince within. The film stars: Emma Watson as Belle; Dan Stevens as the Beast; Luke Evans as Gaston, the handsome, but shallow villager who woos Belle; Oscar® winner Kevin Kline as Maurice, Belle’s eccentric, but lovable father; Josh Gad as Lefou, Gaston’s long-suffering aide-de-camp; Golden Globe® nominee Ewan McGregor as Lumiere, the candelabra; Oscar nominee Stanley Tucci as Maestro Cadenza, the harpsichord; Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Plumette, the feather duster; six-time Tony Award® winner Audra McDonald as Madame Garderobe, the wardrobe; Oscar nominee Ian McKellen as Cogsworth, the mantel clock; and two-time Academy Award® winner Emma Thompson as the teapot, Mrs. Potts.
Beauty and the Beast will be released in U.S. theaters on March 17, 2017.
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