By: Jia Jarin
Pull up a chair and be our guest because ABC is putting together a two-hour spectacular of Disney’s tale-as-old-as-time on December 15, 2022.
To celebrate 30 years of the animated classic’s release, the network announced a Beauty and the Beast special which will feature a mix of live-action and animated sequences, paying tribute to the iconic fairy tale and the legacy it has made.
Although the casting has yet to be disclosed, it is confirmed that the Beauty and the Beast songs we all know and love will be performed live at Disney Studios on the day of the broadcast. Fans can also anticipate a reveal of new sets, costumes, and never-before-seen musical performances.
Hamish Hamilton, who is known for helming prestigious award shows such as the Emmys and Grammys, is set to direct the two-hour special alongside Jon M. Chu (“Crazy Rich Asians” and “In The Heights”) as one of the executive producers.
Craig Erwich, president of Hulu Originals and ABC Entertainment said in an interview with Variety: “‘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. 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.”
Executive producer Jon Chu added: “‘Beauty and the Beast’ was always a game-changing cinematic experience for me. The fact that I get to executive produce a tribute to all the creatives that made this masterpiece through our Electric Somewhere company is a dream I didn’t even think was possible. With world-class creatives and talent to reinterpret the classic musical numbers (with a few surprises), I can’t wait for the audiences, in person and at home, to experience what we have in store for them. It’s a true celebration of creativity.”
Beauty and the Beast became Disney’s groundbreaking fairytale when it debuted in 1991; it made history by being the first animated film to be nominated for Best Picture and winning Best Original Song for track “Beauty and the Beast” at the 1992 Oscars.
Though it peaked during Disney’s renaissance era, the film continues to charm audiences of all ages as the franchise branches out to broadway musicals and even a 2017 live-action adaptation starring Emma Watson.
Aside from ensembling a two-hour special, Disney previously released a 30th anniversary limited edition Beauty and the Beast collector doll set last year.
Catch “Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration” on December 15, Thursday at 8 PM EST on ABC. The special will also be available for streaming on Disney+ the following day.
What would you like to see in the Beauty and the Beast special? When was the first time you watched the classic animated film? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below!