Singer H.E.R. to play Disney princess Belle in ABC’s upcoming special Beauty And The Beast: A 30th Celebration

R&B singer H.E.R. is set to play the iconic role of Disney princess Belle in ABC’s Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration.

Per People magazine, ABC announced that the 25-year-old musician – real name Gabriella Wilson – would star in the upcoming television special on Wednesday.

‘I can’t believe I get to be a part of the Beauty and the Beast legacy,’ H.E.R said in a statement. 

Exciting: R&B singer H.E.R. is set to play the iconic role of Disney princess Belle in ABC's Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration. Seen in April 2022

Exciting: R&B singer H.E.R. is set to play the iconic role of Disney princess Belle in ABC’s Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration. Seen in April 2022

TV special: Per People magazine, ABC announced that the 25-year-old musician - real name: Gabriella Wilson - would star in the upcoming television special on Wednesday

TV special: Per People magazine, ABC announced that the 25-year-old musician – real name: Gabriella Wilson – would star in the upcoming television special on Wednesday

She continued, ‘The world will see a Black and Filipino Belle!’

The Grammy and Academy Award-winning performer added, ‘I have always wanted to be a Disney princess.

‘And I get to work with two wonderful directors Hamish Hamilton and my favorite, Jon M. Chu. It is very surreal and I couldn’t be more grateful.’

'I can't believe I get to be a part of the Beauty and the Beast legacy,' H.E.R said in a statement. Seen in 2021

 ‘I can’t believe I get to be a part of the Beauty and the Beast legacy,’ H.E.R said in a statement. Seen in 2021

First time: She continued, 'The world will see a Black and Filipino Belle!'

First time: She continued, ‘The world will see a Black and Filipino Belle!’

According to Deadline, Chu, 42, will be serving as executive producer and Hamilton, 56, will direct the special, which will be a live-action/animated hybrid.

Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration will be presented by The Wonderful World of Disney and will be taped in front of a live audience. The special will air on December 15 on ABC and will be available to stream on Disney+ on December 16.

In a statement, Chu said, ‘With her obvious extraordinary talent and stage presence, H.E.R. is the perfect embodiment of our Belle and we are thrilled for audiences to see her in this celebration of creativity.’

Hybrid: Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration will be presented by The Wonderful World of Disney and will be a live-action/animated hybrid. Pictured in 2021

Hybrid: Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration will be presented by The Wonderful World of Disney and will be a live-action/animated hybrid. Pictured in 2021

The Crazy Rich Asians director added, ‘We were both influenced as storytellers by the original animated movie, so it’s very exciting to collaborate together to honor the artistry of that timeless classic while also inspiring a whole new generation of creators.’

Deadline reported that the special will feature ‘never-before-seen live musical performances paying homage to the timeless tale as well as new sets and costumes inspired by the classic story.’

Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration will commemorate the 30th anniversary of the animated film’s release in 1991.

Starring Paige O’Hara and Robby Benson as the voices of Belle and the Beast, the movie became a huge hit for Disney and an instant classic.

It became the first animated film to be nominated for a Best Picture Oscar at the 64th Academy Awards in 1992 and received five total nominations include Best Original Score, Best Original Song (Be Our Guest), Best Original Song (Belle), Best Origial Song (Beauty and the Beast) and Best Sound Mixing.

Upcoming: The special will air on December 15 on ABC and will be available to stream on Disney+ on December 16. Seen in March 2022

Upcoming: The special will air on December 15 on ABC and will be available to stream on Disney+ on December 16. Seen in March 2022

Beauty and the Beast won the Academy Award for Best Original Score and Best Original Song (Beauty and the Beast).

H.E.R.’s self-titled debut 2017 album was nominated for five Grammy Awards, winning for Best R&B Performance and Best R&B Album.

The artist’s second album I Used to Know Her was nominated for five Grammys, with her single ‘I Can’t Breathe’ winning for Song of the Year.

Her song for the Judas and the Black Messiah soundtrack titled Fight For You won the Academy Award for Best Original Song and the Grammy Award for Best Traditional R&B Performance.

In December, she will be seen on the big screen in Blitz Bazawule’s musical adaptation of Alice Walker’s Pulitzer Prize-winning 1982 novel The Color Purple.

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