BEAUTY AND THE BEAST: Luke Evans to Play Gaston in Disney’s Live Action

Beauty And The Beast

UPDATE: THR reports that Dan Stevens, the breakout star of “Downton Abbey” is in talks to play The Beast/Prince in Disney’s live-action musical Beauty and the Beast.

According to Variety, Luke Evans has the role of the villain, Gaston, in Disney’s live action Beauty and the Beast.

The Dracula Untold star joins Harry Potter star Emma Watson who signed on to play Belle back in January

Bill Condon (Gods and Monsters) is directing from the script written by Evan Spiliotopoulos (The Jungle Book 2) and rewritten by Steve Chbosky who wrote The Perks of Being a Wallflower.

Ryan Gosling was Disney’s top choice to play the Beast role in the movie, but it isn’t known if a deal was ever reached.

Beauty and the Beast is expected to hit theaters in 2016.

The age difference between Evans and Watson will definitely add a high ‘yuck factor’ to his antics, not to mention that his musical chops will be called into question. Fine, whatever. Now we just need a Chris Hemsworth as the beast.

UPDATE: Well, put those casting rumors to rest. The Guest star Dan Stevens will play the Prince cursed to be a beast in the upcoming live-action take on Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont’s classic fairy tale. A release date is not yet set, but filming on the pic is poised to get underway later this year.

Stevens confirmed the news on Twitter:

Great casting thus far, but can Emma, Daniel and Luke sing?