There are currently three versions of Beauty and the Beast in the works. ABC ordered a pilot for Fall 2012 from Jonathan Steinberg (Jericho, Human Target) that they're calling "a fantastical re-imagining of the classic fairy tale set in a mythical, dangerous world wherein a beautiful and tough Princess discovers an unlikely connection with a mysterious beast.” Yesterday, we reported on the film version to be produced and directed by Guillermo del Toro and starring Emma Watson. Hulk posited in the comments on the likelihood of del Toro fave Ron Perlman's reprising the role, until we all determined that we'd be horrified watching Hermione make out with Hellboy.
The CW version is actually a remake of the CBS series starring Perlman as the beast and the great Linda Hamilton as the prodigiously coiffed beauty, and today we learned that Smallville's Kristin Kreuk has landed the lead as la belle femme. Kreuk played Lana Lang for seven seasons on Smallville and returned for a guest spot in Season 8, and I've always been surprised that she hasn't taken off since departing from the show. She's a competent actress - not spectacularly endowed with talent, but she has a very nice delivery, she's a wonderful crier, she is by all accounts very hard-working and pleasant on set, and she is almost unnervingly beautiful.
I don't know if anyone else has seen Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li, but that movie is so gloriously fatuous, in particular thanks to Chris Klein's insane, ridiculous, magical performance as Charlie Nash, that if it's ever on Instant Watch or available through any other effortless means at two in the morning when you're drunk and want some background noise while you eat tacos and then nod off on your sofa, I really recommend it. It's one of the first reviews I did on my own little website; you can read it here, if you're interested. Anyway! Kreuk kicks a solid amount of ass in that movie, although not necessarily performance-wise. I mean, she is literally kicking people's asses as Chun-Li. Kreuk did a ton of stunt work on Smallville, and she's good at it.
Of the three Beauty and the Beast projects on the horizon, I'm most excited about del Toro's - at least until he drops out. But honestly, I want to watch all three. ABC dominates the market on Beauty and the Beast, being owned by Disney, and the so-bad-it's-fun absurdity of those few episodes I watched of Once Upon A Time certainly has me intrigued for this new fairy tale show. I loved the CBS series, and while the modern CW version will put far too much emphasis on the procedural element, I'm still into it. Hamilton played a district attorney in the '80s show; this show will follow beauty Catherine on her travails as a homicide detective in New York.
It centers on Catherine (Kreuk), a tough-minded NYPD homicide detective haunted by witnessing her mother’s murder nine years ago and the killers’ quick demise at the hands of a Beast. After years of searching, Catherine finally finds the Beast, Vincent Koslow, the survivor of a military experiment that went disastrously wrong, and becomes the protector of his secret life as a superhero.
Yeah, that sounds good. And I'd like to see Kreuk pull off "tough-minded NYPD homicide detective." I think she can do it. Kreuk has always played tough better than sexy, an impressive achievement considering how freaking gorgeous and tiny she is. I never really cared for the character of Lana Lang, but I'm rooting for Kreuk in this role.