A tale as old as time returns to the big screen next year, as Disney's live-action Beauty and the Beast promises to envelop audiences in a brand new world of magic. Starring Emma Watson as Belle and Dan Stevens as the Beast, the first trailer has soared online and it's a thing of beauty. Here's our rundown of the 10 greatest highlights.
Alan Menken's back
In a blast of pure nostalgia we're re-acquainted with the ethereal, haunting notes of Alan Menken's Oscar-winning score, here reworked for the live-action context as we get our first glimpse of the Beast's castle and his ravaged tapestries. It honours the spirit of the 1991 classic whilst bringing it up to date. Plus, that nifty transition with the Disney castle in the logo is just wonderful.
The A Fish Called Wanda Oscar winner here plays Belle's father, and it seems like his first encounter with the ferocious Beast will amp up the intensity when compared to the animated version. We're expecting director Bill Condon to bring some of his familiar Twilight moodiness to scenes such as this.
Much has been made about how the Harry Potter star is a perfect fit for plucky heroine Belle, both in looks and temperament. But our first look at Emma in the trailer confirms it absolutely: she's poised to bring the sensitivity displayed in films like Perks of Being a Wallflower to her role as the vulnerable yet brave Belle.
The Beast revealed
Former Downton Abbey heartthrob and The Guest badass Dan Stevens cuts a genuinely fearsome figure when we see the Beast for the first time. We love how the prosthetics have worked around his features, allowing for maximum expressiveness that will heighten the sense of emotion.
Meet the gang
Candelabra Lumiere, clock Cogsworth and teapot Mrs. Potts were hilarious highlights of the original movie and they now get an injection of star power courtesy of Ewan McGregor, Ian McKellen and Emma Thompson, respectively. Plus, we're liking how the advances in CGI technology have allowed for greater expressiveness and invention as far as their facial expressions are concerned.
The attack sequence in the 1991 movie where the Beast saves Belle (inaugurating their hesitant but deeply-felt romance) was intense enough. Imagine how scary it'll be here with wolves rendered in even-more lifelike fashion.
Will the Welsh superstar prove to be a memorable live-action Disney villain? Cate Blanchett made Lady Tremaine genuinely hissable in last year's hit Cinderella so here's hoping that Evans will transform Gaston into more than just a love rival for Belle's affections.
Belle of the ball
The centrepiece sequence of the first movie was the gloriously romantic dance sequence between Belle and the Beast, the moment where we realised their love knew no bounds. By the looks of it the scene is poised to get a glossy, spectacular makeover, although the strains of Alan Menken's stirring score create a moving link to the past.
Beast vs. Gaston
Remember the climactic showdown on the towers of Beast's castle? This new version looks set to bring lashings of CGI slickness to the final fight between the redeemed Beast and the jealous Gaston. Here's hoping the actors bring the conviction alongside the glitzier effects.
We love how Condon and Disney have honoured the classic, heartbreaking imagery of the original movie. After all, one simply cannot have Beauty and the Beast without the symbol of the Beast's curse. Fingers crossed this new version will make us laugh and cry all over again – although frankly, the final few delicate strains of Menken's 'Beauty and the Beast' number are enough to bring on the waterworks.
Check out the trailer for yourselves and send us your highlights @Cineworld. Beauty and the Beast is released on 17th March 2017.