Not watching that, then
“Beauty and the Beast” might be a tale as old as time, but that doesn’t mean its gender politics have to be in the dark ages.
Details are slowly trickling out about Disney’s upcoming live-action remake of the classic love story, and we’re happy to hear that there’s a feminist twist in store for Emma Watson’s Belle. [Uh... you might be, bub, but the rest of us are not interested.]
“In the animated movie, it’s her father who is the inventor, and we actually co-opted that for Belle,” Watson told Entertainment Weekly in a recent interview. “I was like, ‘Well, there was never very much information or detail at the beginning of the story as to why Belle didn’t fit in, other than she liked books. Also, what is she doing with her time?’ So, we created a backstory for her, which was that she had invented a kind of washing machine, so that, instead of doing laundry, she could sit and use that time to read instead. So, yeah, we made Belle an inventor.”
There are still young girls who are not able to go to school because of cultural restrictions. Children are being married off at a young age. This inhibits their opportunities to a better life and future.
In addition, the Beauty and the Beast actress is not far off from her role in the movie. In the movie, Belle is a vibrant young woman full of strength and passion. She lies in a conforming society and she strives to be more than that. This is why Belle is a different take on Disney‘s usual reputation of having its female characters as a damsel in distress.
Much like Watson, her character loves to read and has goals and aspirations. This Beauty is known for her bravery, intelligence and independence. And this can scream feminism. Something that Vanity Fair even points out.
Moreover, even Emma Watson makes it a point to evolve the character with a fresher feminist twist. Aside from the original back story, Watson adds more depth. In addition, she makes sure that her character is not just into books but also invention.