Gaston from Beauty and the Beast is one of Disney’s most renowned villains. The character is deemed a vain and arrogant contender for Belle’s heart. When Gaston first came out in 1991, he came across as a funny guy. However, upon realizing that Beast is a legitimate threat to his ambitions, Gaston eventually shows a monstrous side. In the upcoming Beauty and the Beast live-action remake, will Disney downplay Gaston’s attitude? Actor Luke Evans doesn’t think so.
In an interview with Cinema Blend, Evans confirmed that the Gaston Beauty and the Beast fans grew up with would remain the same.
“It was really fun to play this character, because it’s such a great arc, such a great like arc. He starts as a kind of lovable rogue – says all these self-absorbed egocentric phrases and has his crazy sidekick. And then once he starts to realize he’s not going to get his own way, the facade starts to crack, and there’s a monster appears, and he ends up being quite the villain.”
The Welsh actor has nabbed the role in the real-life adaptation of the beloved Disney film. Emma Watson will play Belle and Dan Stevens will give life to Beast. Evans started his career on the stage but despite his singing prowess, he admitted that he still felt under pressure when he first auditioned for the role.
“They wanted to hear everybody. I can tell you huge names that were in the room before me and after me. I was like, ‘F**k’,” he revealed to Interview magazine. “Everybody was being seen for these roles, and for Gaston especially… Sometimes when you audition it’s quite a nerve wracking thing, you’re quite exposed and maybe have only had the script for a few days before.”
What calmed him was the smile of director Bill Codon during his performance. Evans feels grateful that he was chosen among an array of equally experienced actors. He finds this satisfying instead of merely being given the job with no challenge.
He described auditioning for roles as a “little bit more legit” and a “validation that you are the right person for the job because they’ve chosen and they’ve seen you do something connected to that role.”
Playing a character like Gaston in Beauty and the Beast is fairly new to Evans. Speaking to CBS News, he said that the role entails “loads of preparation.”
“Amazing. Quite a responsibility, I have to say. But loads of prep. I rehearsed for quite a few weeks because it’s quite choreographed and took plenty of time to get into the character. I mean, my hair is longer than Emma Watson’s in it, I think. And also because I’m a singer, I finally got to do it. I finally got to sing on screen in such a brilliant role, so it’s gonna be great.”
Meanwhile, Beauty and the Beast fans got their first look of Watson as Belle through the recently released photos. The British actress looks nearly identical to the cartoon version of Belle except for the subtle hairstyle change. Instead of a ponytail, the new Belle uses her blue ribbon as a headband.
Another photo features Belle in her iconic dress. In the photo, Belle dances with the Beast although she appears to be resentful. It is noticeable that the pair’s background is a shattered window pane which likely symbolizes Belle’s initial feelings for her captor.
Fans will have to wait until March 17, 2017, as Beauty and the Beast is still in post-production process. Those who want to see Evans may watch The Girl on the Train where he plays the role of a distraught husband whose wife had gone missing.
[Featured Image by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images]