Emma Watson Cast As Disney’s Belle

Emma Watson will bring Belle to live in a live-action 'Beauty and the Beast.' (Getty)

Emma Watson will bring Belle to live in a live-action ‘Beauty and the Beast.’ (Getty)

Emma Watson has been cast as the lead in Disney’s live-action adaptation of Beauty and the Beast, she confirmed on Monday.

The film, set to begin production in 2015, will be directed by Bill Condon (Twilight: Breaking Dawn). No release date has been set.

Watson, who already made headlines earlier this month in her role as a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, confirmed the casting on her official Facebook page.

“I’m finally able to tell you… that I will be playing Belle in Disney’s new live-action Beauty and the Beast! It was such a big part of my growing up, it almost feels surreal that I’ll get to dance to ‘Be Our Guest’ and sing ‘Something There’. My six year old self is on the ceiling – heart bursting. Time to start some singing lessons. I can’t wait for you to see it,” Watson wrote.

The film comes amid a string of live-action updates to popular Disney classics, though perhaps none as venerable as Beauty and the Beast, which became the first full-length animated feature to be nominated for the Academy Award’s Best Picture category.

Also in Disney’s future is a retelling of Cinderella (2015), starring Lily James, and Jon Favreau’s Jungle Book (2016).

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