Continuing their promise of one new Platinum Editionrelease each year, Buena Vista Home Entertainment has revealed all the information about the upcoming fully immersive version of their 1991 fairy tale Beauty and the Beast.
Set in and around a quaint French village during the late 18th Century, “Beauty and the Beast” follows the fantastic adventures of Belle, a bright and beautiful young woman who finds escape from her ordinary life, and the advances of a boorish suitor, Gaston, by reading books. Meanwhile, off in a castle in the distance, a cruel young prince is cast under the spell of an enchantress who turns him into a tormented beast, and transforms his servants into animated household objects. In order to remove the curse, the Beast must discover a true love who will return his affection before the last petal falls from an enchanted rose. When Belle’s inventor father stumbles upon the Beast’s castle and is taken prisoner, Belle comes to the rescue and agrees to take her father’s place. With the help of the castle’s enchanted staff, she sees beneath the Beast’s exterior and discovers the heart and soul of a human prince.
Like “Snow White”, “Beauty and the Beast” will be given the deluxe treatment with extras to appeal both the film enthusiast and the family. Three versions of the film will be presented on the disc in their entirety; the original theatrical version, the extended version released this year with the added musical number “Human Again”, and the original workprint version shown at the 1991 New York Film Festival. The versions will all be shown in anamorphic widescreen with the Dolby Digital 5.1 audio tracks created for the 2002 release. The two disc set is labeled as the first “experimental DVD”. The first disc contains the film itself accompanied by an audio commentary with the filmmakers and a karaoke feature which will allow viewers to sing along with the songs as the movie progresses. The disc also promises an interactive environment which will allow viewers to interact with the characters as the film proceeds. Maurice’s Invention Workshop Game also allows younger viewers to play along with a game that continues on the second disc. Disc two contains a library of features separated into four areas. Mrs. Potts – Fun for all Ages contains the featurette The Story Behind The Story in which the viewer is transported into Belle’s library as celebrity hosts Celine Dion, James Earl Jones, David Ogden Stiers, Ming Na, Angela Lansbury, Robby Benson, Page O’Hara and Jodi Benson share the stories behind several of Disney’s most beloved characters. Also included is the A Tale as Old as Time making of featurette, the character profile game, and the “Beauty And The Beast” Broadway Musical featurette. Chip’s – Perfect for the Younger Adventurer contains Disney’s Animation Magic, a backstage tour of the Disney Channel’s “Even Stevens”, Chip’s Musical Challenge Game, and the “Beauty And The Beast” music video by Jump 5. West Wing – The Forbidden World is home to the “Break The Spell” game. Cogsworth and Lumiere – For the Ultimate Collector & Film Fan is broken up into several subsections; Bringing the Story to the Screen contains an early presentation reel, an alternate version of “Be Our Guest”, an alternate score for The Transformation, and original demo recordings with introduction by Alan Menken. Designing Beauty And The Beast has an art and design gallery. The Characters has several character galleries. Animating Beauty And The Beast contains a pencil version of The Transformation and animation tests. Setting The Stage has the featurette Tricks of the Trade and a camera movement test. Release & Reaction houses poster & ad design, trailers, TV spots and the large screen format trailer.
The second Platinum Edition disc will be available on October 8th. It will carry a suggested retail price of $29.99.