Flashback to 1991: The Iconic Beauty and The Beast Cast that Stole Our Hearts

Flashback to 1991: The Iconic Beauty and The Beast Cast that Stole Our Hearts

Disney’s animated movie Beauty and the Beast is a true classic, and it’s hard to imagine anyone not being familiar with the story. The movie features one of the most memorable soundtracks of all time that includes songs like “Be Our Guest”, “Beauty and the Beast”, and “Belle”. Over the years, the movie has been adapted into a Broadway musical and a live-action movie. However, when it comes to the original 1991 animated version, one of the critical factors behind its success was the brilliant cast that brought the characters to life.

The Cast that Made Beauty and the Beast a Classic

The role of Belle, the lead character, was voiced by Paige O’Hara, a legendary Broadway actress who made her debut in the movie. Her performance was nothing short of phenomenal and brought a depth and complexity to the character that few other actresses could have achieved. It’s hard to listen to her sing the opening lines of “Belle” and not be immediately transported back to the world of Beauty and the Beast.

The Beast was voiced by Robby Benson, who brought an equal amount of depth and nuance to his role. His growling, deep voice was perfect for the character, and he gave us one of the most iconic performances in animation history.

Meanwhile, the supporting cast also played a pivotal role in the movie’s success. Jerry Orbach voiced Lumiere, the charismatic and flamboyant candelabra, while David Ogden Stiers provided the perfect blend of snobbishness and humor as Cogsworth, the clock.

The Making of the Cast that Stole Our Hearts

Interestingly, casting the leads in the movie was not as straightforward as one might imagine. For instance, before Paige O’Hara was chosen to play Belle, another actress was shortlisted for the role. However, she ended up being dropped when Paige auditioned and impressed the producers with her incredible voice and acting skills. Meanwhile, Robby Benson wasn’t even on the initial shortlist of actors to play the Beast. Still, he managed to convince the producers to give him a chance, and the rest is history.

The supporting cast was equally challenging to cast. For instance, Angela Lansbury was originally considered for the role of Mrs. Potts, but she was too famous for the producers to afford. Instead, the role went to Angela’s best friend, Emma Thompson, who ended up doing an incredible job.


In conclusion, the cast of the original 1991 animated version of Beauty and the Beast was nothing short of phenomenal. Their performances brought the characters to life in a way that was both engaging and timeless. While there have been adaptations and reboots since then, the original remains one of the most beloved movies of all time. It’s hard to imagine anyone else playing these iconic characters and giving us the memorable performances that they did.

We hope you enjoyed this trip down memory lane!

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