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Emma Watson explains why she took the part of Belle instead of Cinderella

01.18.2017

Emma Watson is the new Belle in BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, and Disney die-hards are overflowing with giddiness, waiting to hear her sing and twirl in the upcoming film. But this is a fairy tale that was almost not so, as Watson was offered the leading role in the 2015 live-action CINDERELLA movie, but turned it down. Lily James was then hired, and everything turned out magical, and everyone had cake and celebrated. But still, some are still wondering why she picked Belle and not Cinderella. Watson sat down with Total Film recently to talk about the upcoming fantasy tale, and in the process gave an answer to that very mystery:

I didn’t know they were going to make Beauty and the Beast at the time I turned down Cinderella. But when they offered me Belle, I just felt the character resonated with me so much more than Cinderella did.

Watson has spent much of her post-POTTER time working on behalf of women’s rights, so Belle being a role model for young girls is something the actress looked for in taking the part:

 She remains curious, compassionate and open-minded. And that’s the kind of woman I would want to embody as a role model, given the choice. There’s this kind of outsider quality that Belle had and the fact she had this really empowering defiance of what was expected of her. In a strange way, she challenges the status quo of the place she lives in, and I found that really inspiring.

As well Total Film got a hold of some new photos for the movie, featuring a grumpy Beast (Dan Stevens). Take a look at Mr. Pout below!

When it comes to CINDERELLA I’m glad James got the part. Not to say Watson would’ve done poorly, but James did such a great job embodying the character. Anyway, I think the cards were shuffled just fine with the casting we have now, and I’m sure Watson will nail it as Belle. At the very least she gets to say she waltzed across the room with a CGI beast. James just got to play with rats.

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST arrives March 17.

Source: Total FilmEW

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