Beauty and the Beast is great, epic, amazing, etc., but can we talk about the thing with the beard!?
Confession: I saw Beauty and the Beast with very neutral expectations, and I came out of it still feeling very neutral. It was cute! I liked some of the changes, while others felt unnecessary. The new songs were fine, but I’ve already forgotten them.
There was only one moment in the entire movie that moved me to any sort of emotion: The line spoken by Belle near the end, when she tells Prince Beast to grow a beard — and he smirks and growls in response.
WHAT. WAS. THAT.
Everything about Belle and Beast’s behavior in that scene was hilariously inappropriate, and so out of tone for a movie so heavily Disney-fied that Malaysia and some cinema in Alabama have banned it for a supposed ‘gay moment’ that, let’s be real, is so blink-and-you-miss-it it’s practically non-existent.
But don’t get me wrong, I loved it. It was a rare moment of a Disney film allowing its leads to have real chemistry as they awkwardly giggled over the implications of what was just said.
I just wasn’t expecting a family movie that already inappropriately flirts with bestiality (beast-iality?) to lean into it in such an obvious way, but hey, why not call a spade a spade? Now I’m really excited to see if The Little Mermaid will feature some sort of nod to Prince Eric’s fish fetish.
And you can’t actually blame Belle being more attracted to the Beast than the Prince, because the live-action adaptation definitely stayed true to how disappointing the reveal of his human form was (the Beast is just better-looking, sorry Dan Stevens). And it’s not like adult jokes are a new concept in Disney films.
But that growl though. Wow, so wrong.
But wait! There’s actually a really sweet reason behind it
It’s not just pervy, guys, the line was actually added for a reason!
Turns out it’s an homage to voice actress Paige O’Hara, who lent her voice to Belle in the 1991 animated classic Beauty and the Beast.
In an interview with Insider, O’Hara revealed, “I love Glen Keane’s Beast, that’s why I ad-libbed, ‘Do you think you can grow a beard?’ It almost made it in the movie. But Glen’s very proud of his prince and I understand why. He really is the most beautiful, I think, of all the Disney princes in history.”
According to PopSugar, the line was added to the live-action adaptation to honor O’Hara — and to confirm that Belle likes ’em hairy? Hey, whatever fuels that happily ever after.
And now they have a perfect title for the inevitable sequel! I, for one, can’t wait for Beauty and the Beard opening Winter 2020.