The original voice of Disney's beloved Belle, Paige O’Hara, has spoken out about what she thinks of the decision to cast Emma Watson in the upcoming live-action Beauty and the Beast, and she has given her blessing to her successor.
O'Hara told Buzzfeed that she believed that Watson really encapsulates the spirit of Belle thanks to her book-smarts, wisdom and compassion for others, she explained to interviewers that:
"I think she’s absolutely perfect for the role, She’s got the outward beauty, but she’s also got an inward beauty about her, and an old soul. Through mutual people we’ve sent messages, and I just basically was wishing her all the best and to have a wonderful time."
But which element of Watson's performance is Paige really looking forward to? Obviously, it's that magical time where Belle really starts to fall for the Beast, she said:
“In [the original] movie it was in the snow scene of ‘Something There’ that we made a specific choice that it hits Belle: She’s really falling in love with [the Beast],” she said.“I want to see Emma’s moment when she realizes she’s fallen in love. That will be so exciting.”
Check out O'Hara's vocals below:
O'Hara also told Buzzfeed reporters that she believes Belle is a great feminist role model who is perfectly compatible with the charity work that Watson does for organizations promoting women's equality, she explained:
“She was so strong, so independent, and in this day and age she would be for women’s rights — she wasn’t looking for a prince, she fell in love with a man.”
Amen to that, Paige!
If you haven't seen the trailer already (what are you, some sort of animal?!) check it out HERE.
Do you think Emma Watson will make the perfect Belle?