Disney's Beauty and the Beast: Martin Short and Shania Twain in Talks for ABC Special

Martin Short and Shania Twain are in talks to join Disney and ABC's Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration, an animated and live-action blended special celebrating the 30th anniversary of the 1992 Disney animated musical. Two-time Emmy winner Short would play Lumière, the charming candelabra who performs "Be Our Guest," and five-time Grammy winner Twain would play Mrs. Potts, the enchanted teapot who heads the castle kitchens. Variety first reported the news. 

Short and Twain are in final talks to join a cast that includes Grammy and Academy Award winner H.E.R. as Belle, Billboard Music Award winner Josh Groban as the Beast, Grammy and Tony Award nominee Joshua Henry as Gaston, and Tony Award winner David Alan Grier as Cogsworth. EGOT winner and West Side Story star Rita Moreno narrates the one-night re-imagining of the beloved animated film. 

The two-hour special, airing December 15 on ABC and streaming the next day on Disney+, pays tribute to the original Disney Animation's Beauty and the Beast and its legacy by showcasing the fan-favorite movie, along with new memorable musical performances, taking viewers on a magical adventure through the eyes of Belle.  

The Wonderful World of Disney and ABC special event presentation is executive produced by filmmaker Jon M. Chu (Crazy Rich Asians, In the Heights) and directed by Hamish Hamilton (ABC's Disney Family Singalong special and the Emmy-winning Super Bowl LVI halftime show headlined by Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J. Blige, and Kendrick Lamar). 

"Beauty and the Beast is a timeless story and we're so fortunate to work with creative mastermind Jon M. Chu and veteran director Hamish Hamilton to bring a modern twist to this beloved classic for an unforgettable night of Disney magic," said Craig Erwich, president, Hulu Originals and ABC Entertainment, when announcing the special in April. "Stacked with unforgettable performances, this will be a must-see special event for fans of the original and for the new generation being introduced to this cherished tale."

2022 marks the 30th anniversary of Disney Animation's Beauty and the Beast becoming the first animated film to be nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards. The film went on to win the Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, while the theme song "Beauty and the Beast" won the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1992.

Disney's Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration airs Thursday, December 15 on ABC and is available to stream starting December 16 on Disney+.