Jill Layton
January 26, 2015 1:10 pm

Emma Watson has gone from being an awesome child actress to a superior women’s rights activist. For those of us who’ve grown up with her, she’s already a role model, but now she’s going to be role modeling it up for a new generation of young girls, because—wait for it—she’s starring as Belle in Disney’s live action adaption of Beauty and the Beast!

Our girl announced the super exciting news on her Facebook page:

“I’m finally able to tell you… that I will be playing Belle in Disney’s new live-action Beauty and the Beast! It was such a big part of my growing up, it almost feels surreal that I’ll get to dance to ‘Be Our Guest’ and sing ‘Something There’. My six year old self is on the ceiling – heart bursting. Time to start some singing lessons. I can’t wait for you to see it. Emma xx”

OK, there’s so much goodness about this. For all the complicated feelings we have about Disney Princesses, it’s exciting to see someone with the qualities of a REAL lady-hero, step into the role. No doubt, she’ll portray an empowering, 21st century version of Belle, because that is what she’s all about.

From launching the He for She campaign to promote gender equality, to serving as UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, and from supporting women from all countries through social media, to giving some incredibly moving speeches about overcoming gender bias, she’s kind of become our celebrity hero. So it’s cool to think she’ll amass a new legion of young fans with this film, who will ultimately be introduced to the amazing work she’s doing outside of Hollywood.

There’s also the fact that we miss our Hermione, and we’re ready to see Watson play another fantasy character all over again. One of the reasons why we love Hermione so much is because she just couldn’t stop talking about books. And now Watson, AKA Hermione, will be playing Belle — a character who just can’t stop SINGING about books! Yes, please! We also totally appreciate when actors, who aren’t professional singers, take on singing roles — because for some of us, even just singing in front of our pets gives us anxiety.

While no release date has been set yet, we do know the film will go intro production this year, and that director Bill Condon, of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn fame, is running the show. So that’s awesome.

But back to Emma Watson playing Belle. This is how we feel:

Featured image via, via

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