Disney+ has greenlit a Beauty and the Beast limited musical series, which will actually be a prequel set years before the events of the 2017 live-action film. The news was unveiled as part of a celebration revolving around the 30th anniversary of the original 1991 animated movie. Josh Gad and Luke Evans are confirmed to reprise their roles as LeFou and Gaston, respectively. The series has no officially announced title as of now (although details on that may have slipped already), but will consist of eight episodes.
The announcement also confirmed that newcomer Briana Middleton (The Tender Bar) has been cast as LeFou’s stepsister Tilly, who ends up accompanying the duo on a whirlwind adventure.
“For anyone who’s ever wondered how a brute like Gaston and a goof like LeFou could have ever become friends and partners, or how a mystical enchantress came to cast that fateful spell on the prince-turned-beast, this series will finally provide those answers…and provoke a whole new set of questions,” said Gary Marsh, president and chief creative officer, Disney Branded Television.
The Beauty and the Beast prequel series is developed, executive-produced, and written by Gad, Edward Kitsis, and Adam Horowitz (Once Upon a Time), with each serving as a co-showrunner. The creative team also includes Tony Award-nominated director Liesl Tommy (Respect), who boards the project as executive producer and will also direct the first episode. The series will feature an original soundtrack from composer Alan Menken, who will also serve as executive producer, and lyrics for the first episode will be by Oscar-nominee Glenn Slater (Tangled).
Production on the Beauty and the Beast limited series will begin in 2022, with a Disney+ premiere date yet to be announced. Here’s the show’s official synopsis:
Set in the iconic kingdom of “Beauty and the Beast” years before the Beast and Belle’s epic romance, the series will follow Gaston and LeFou as they set off with LeFou’s step-sister, Tilly, after a surprising revelation from her past comes to light, sending the unlikely trio off on an unexpected journey filled with romance, comedy, and adventure. While the mysteries of the past are uncovered and the dangers of the present grow, old friends and new enemies reveal that this familiar kingdom harbors many secrets.