Walt Disney Pictures/courtesy Everett Collection
Animation and live-action will come together this winter to tell the 'tale as old as time' story of Beauty and the Beast in ABC's forthcoming Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration, which marks three decades since the beloved animated classic received a history-making Academy Award Best Picture nomination.
"Stacked with unforgettable performances, this will be a must-see special event for fans of the original and for the new generation being introduced to this cherished tale," ABC Entertainment President Craig Erwich told The Hollywood Reporter.
The fairytale has been an animated film, a Broadway musical and most recently a live-action movie starring Emma Watson. Come December, the 30th Celebration special will feature never-before-seen musical performances as well as new sets and costumes inspired by the story, according to THR.
Alan Menken won the 1992 Best Original Score Oscar for his work on the film, and he shared the Best Original Song statuette with Howard Ashman for the title tune. That theme and more hits from the soundtrack will be performed anew in front of a live studio audience at Disney Studios during December's special.
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"Beauty and the Beast was always a game-changing cinematic experience for me," Chu told THR. "When the animated movie came out, I watched it multiple times in the first weekend."
He continued, "It showed me the outer limits of what animated artists and storytellers could achieve. So the fact that I get to executive produce a tribute to all the creatives that made this masterpiece through our Electric Somewhere company is a dream I didn't even think was possible."
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The two-hour live-action and animated special will air Dec. 15 on ABC and will be available to stream on Disney+ the next day.