We're pretty excited about the Beauty And The Beast live action film (out this week, btw). So, natch, we've re-watched the original - and spotted a few things along the way...
1. As the lyrics of Belle attest, every Disney fan (big or small) should already know that the lead character’s name means ‘beauty’.
But. Did you know that some of the other characters also boast a special meaning behind their names?
LeFou – Gaston’s sidekick – literally translates to ‘the fool’. Pretty apt, no?
2. Bambi’s mother is ALIVE.
Next time you cosy up in your mermaid blanket to watch Beauty And The Beast, take a much closer look at one of the opening scenes outside of the castle, and you’ll spy her frolicking around in the grass.
Disney like to hide these easter eggs for eagle-eyed fans to find.
3. The Beast liked his culture
Not only did he have a spectacular collection of books, he also had Vermeer’s Girl With a Pearl Earring hanging in his castle.
4. Gaston’s death included a very morbid detail
Despite the fact that you don’t actually see the character, well, die, the animators made sure that his fate was confirmed by including skulls in the pupils of his eyes as he fell.
Blink and you’ll miss it.
5. Beauty And The Beast and Aladdin are linked
Sure, if you’re as fanatical about Disney as we are, you might have already heard this one.
After visiting her beloved book shop, Belle tells the shop keeper that her favourite story features ‘far off places, daring sword fights, magic spells… a prince in disguise!’ Sound familiar?
What’s more, Beast actually makes a guest appearance in Aladdin.
6. Belle’s stray strand of hair isn’t there by accident
Nope, she wasn’t just having a ’90s tendril moment – although we’ve all been there.
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Screenwriter Linda Woolverton reportedly said: ‘The only thing I wrote [about Belle’s appearance] was ‘she has a little wisp of hair that keeps falling in her face’. Because I wanted her not to be perfect. It was important that not every hair be in place.’
7. There’s a heartbreaking story behind the credits
The film was dedicated to Howard Ashman, who provided lyrics to songs in both Beauty And The Beast and The Little Mermaid. Howard died from AIDS-related illnesses just before the film hit cinemas. He never got to see the complete film.
The credits read: ‘To our friend Howard, who gave a mermaid her voice and a beast his soul, we will be forever grateful.’