‘Beauty and the Beast’ to feature first Disney gay moment

The upcoming live action version of “Beauty and the Beast” will include an “exclusively gay moment in a Disney movie.” So says the director, Bill Condon, who won an Oscar for writing “Gods and Monsters” (1998), earned another for writing “Chicago” (2002) and then helmed the movie musical “Dreamgirls” (2006).

‘Beauty and the Beast’ Cast: First Look at Live-Action Disney Movie

This tale as old as time is the story of Belle (Emma Watson) and her two would-be suitors, the Beast (Dan Stevens) and Gaston (Luke Evans).  Gaston’s best pal is LeFou who, according to Condon,  is “somebody who on one day wants to be Gaston and on another day wants to kiss Gaston.” To that end, he promises a payoff that will resolve this subplot in a surprising way.

LeFou is played by Josh Gad, a Tony nominee for “The Book of Mormon.” He voiced Olaf the snowman in the Disney animated feature “Frozen.” Here, he is seen on screen and steals every scene in which he appears. Indeed, the director praised the actor to Attitude magazine thus: “Josh makes something really subtle and delicious out of it.”

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Disney has been re-imagining its animated classics for a few years now — including “Maleficent” (2014) “Cinderella” (2015) and “The Jungle Book” (2016) — but “Beauty and the Beast” sets up especially high expectations because of its awards history. The 1991 film won Oscars for Best Original Song (for the title song by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman) and Best Score (also Menken), and it was also the first animated film to be nominated for Best Picture.

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