COLLEGE PARK, Maryland — Disney’s newest live-action remake is a beast.
Only two weeks into its theatrical run, the live-action remake of Disney’s 1991 animated “Beauty and the Beast” has scored many positive reviews and broken box office records. The film has racked up over $300 million in the United States alone and is just shy of $700 million worldwide.
This musical spectacle is anchored by Belle, who is played by Emma Watson. Watson is no stranger to the fantasy genre. She is well-known for her role as Hermione Granger in the “Harry Potter” series.
The new “Beauty and the Beast” movie and the “Harry Potter” franchise share more than just Watson — they share fans.
And those of Potter fandom are no stranger to fan fiction (fan-written stories which expand the worlds of existing work like “Harry Potter”). “Potterheads,” fans of the “Harry Potter” series, cheered the very mention of fan fiction during a Sorting Hat Ceremony at the Washington, D.C. area PotterCon in Silver Spring, Md. last week.
Now in its fourth year, this “Harry Potter”-themed extravaganza brought droves of witches and wizards (organizer Margaret Kaminski says there are no “Squibs” at PotterCon) for an afternoon of Butterbeer, Phoenix Tears, sorting, and, of course, magic.
Last week, Disney conjured up some magic of its own, announcing a slew of upcoming live-action remakes like “Aladdin,” “Mulan” and “The Little Mermaid.”
With Hogwarts alum Watson starring in Disney’s latest megahit, CNS asked Potterheads at PotterCon to fancast the “Harry Potter” star they’d like to see in a live-action Disney remake. And here’s who they cast in the iconic roles…
Evanna Lynch, the princess
Let’s talk Evanna Lynch. Everyone else is. In the “Harry Potter” series, Lynch plays socially awkward, but perpetually chill Luna Lovegood. So which legendary Disney princess could she be?
Did you know You-Know-Who’s most loyal minion Bellatrix Lestrange had a daughter in Hufflepuff? Well, she does, and daughter Rachel says Lynch could pass as Princess Aurora or Cinderella. “She’s sweet. They’re sweet,” said Rachel. What a Hufflepuff answer.
Self-proclaimed Slytherin Nicholas has a different role for Lynch: Rapunzel. “She’s gorgeous, and she has the hair for it,” said Nicholas.
For true Disney divination, ask the pro. Professor Sybill Trelawney thinks Lynch could play the root of King Triton’s grey hair: Princess Ariel.
The Weasleys’ Flying Ford, Anglia, also thinks Lynch would make a “delicate and beautiful” sea princess.
But Lynch isn’t the only mermaid contender…
Bonnie Wright as Ariel
House elves Sarah and Susan say that Bonnie Wright, who plays Harry’s love interest Ginny Weasley, has the hair and the acting chops to play the role of Ariel. (Hey, if she seduced the Chosen One while she was a bland, old human, surely she could snag a prince while portraying a fish.)
So who would play the mermaid’s love interest, Prince Eric? The Potterheads say…
Eddie Redmayne as Prince Eric
Witch Michele from Washington, D.C. says she loves Eddie Redmayne, who plays Newt Scamander in 2016’s Potter spinoff “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” Michele gives Redmayne her vote for Eric, who she says “looks the part.”
Katie Leung as Mulan
Looks aren’t the only factor in casting China’s favorite warrior, Mulan. Several Potterheads say Katie Leung, who played Cho Chang (Harry’s first crush), could be a good fit for the 2018 live-action remake.
Professor Minerva McGonagall says Leung is “an excellent actress” and would make a great Mulan.
Slytherin Carina says Leung would fight “against the norms and do what’s right for her family and friends” in her role as Mulan.
Rupert Grint as Robin Hood
Disney is famous for its princesses, but what about bringing to life some of the more niche characters?
Hufflepuff Felicia says Rupert Grint (also known as Harry’s best friend Ron Weasley), has the personality that fits the naturesque role of Robin Hood. Maybe some Weasley bros could fill out his band of Merry Men?
Daniel Radcliffe as Pinocchio
Although she says Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter himself) may be a little old to play Pinocchio, journalist Rita Skeeter says “something about going from ‘the Boy Who Lived’ to ‘the Boy Who Lies’ speaks to me.”
Tom Felton as Flynn Rider
Draco Malfoy, played by Tom Felton, inspired the dress for this Potterhead, who says Felton would be a good fit for Rapunzel’s love interest Flynn Rider. He has the mischievous “devil-may-care” personality to charm audiences. We could see Felton swap his smirk for Rider’s signature “smolder.”
Kenneth Branagh, the crossver wiz
Some fans think Kenneth Branagh is fit for a leading role. Branagh, the actor who portrays the narcissistic celebrity-turned-professor Gilderoy Lockhart in the Potter series, already has experience with live-action Disney remakes. He directed the 2015 live-action remake of “Cinderella.” But with locks like that and a grin that won him Witch Weekly’s “Most Charming Smile Award,” some say Branagh should be in front of the camera.
Fawkes the Phoenix says that Branagh has the hair of a prince.
This Lockhart-inspired Potterhead loves Branagh (in true Lockhart fashion), who he says can play “any character.” In fact, Branagh should write, direct and star in “Aladdin,” according to this fan. Let’s just see if he can remember his lines.