Hollywood may be all about the fairytales at the moment (Red Riding Hood, Snow White, Jack The Giant Killer and so on) but France is now getting in on the action too. Christophe Gans is preparing a new Beauty And The Beast, with Vincent Cassel and Lea Seydoux set to star. Cassel is the Beast and Seydoux the Beauty. Just in case there was any confusion.
Gans made the live-action manga adaptation Crying Freeman, the mind-bending genre crossover Brotherhood of the Wolf (a pre-French revolutionary monster kung fu horror mystery), and the Silent Hill movie that's currently getting the sequel treatment from Michael J Bassett. A great visual stylist, he's promising big things for Beauty And The Beast.
"With this picture, I want to unleash my imagination," Gans says. "Although I will keep to a form of storytelling of this timeless fairy tale that is in keeping with the same pace and characters as the original, I will surprise the audience by creating a completely new visual universe never experienced before and produce images of an unparalleled quality. Every single one of my movies has presented me with a challenge but this one is, by far, the most exciting and rewarding." Blimey!
Cassel needs no introduction, and worked with Gans before on Brotherhood Of The Wolf. He was also to star in Gans' ambitious new Fantomas, but that project sadly seems to have fallen through.
Seydoux meanwhile, recently turned out for Woody Allen's Midnight In Paris, and was the kick-ass assassin Sabine Moreau in Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol.
Can Gans come up with what he's promising? Will Cassel's Beast stand tall alongside Jean Marais, Robby Benson, Ron Perlman and Meatloaf? We'll start to find out when shooting starts in October.