Disney is all about the villain origin stories these days. With Maleficent and Cruella out of the way, the House of Mouse is turning to another formidable foe in the line-up of evil-doers: the big man on campus himself, Gaston.
A Beauty and the Beast prequel series focusing on Gaston and his bumbling sidekick LeFou’s friendship was announced last March, with the title, Little Town, unveiled during the summer. A news release from Disney, however, now calls the prequel series simply Beauty and the Beast. (Confusing!) The show will be an eight-episode limited series with original songs. Luke Evans and Josh Gad, who played Gaston and LeFou in the 2017 live-action film will reprise their roles, with Briana Middleton (The Tender Bar) joining as as LeFou’s stepsister, Tilly.
The show will include original music from Beauty and the Beast composer Alan Menken. Tony Award-nominated director Liesl Tommy (Eclipsed), will serve as an executive producer and will direct the first episode. Gad, Edward Kitsis, and Adam Horowitz (Once Upon a Time) — who together developed a Muppets musical series for Disney Plus that fizzled out — are writing the series.
The official synopsis is as follows:
Set in the iconic kingdom of Beauty and the Beast years before the Beast and Belle’s epic romance, the series will follow Gaston and LeFou as they set off with LeFou’s step-sister, Tilly, after a surprising revelation from her past comes to light, sending the unlikely trio off on an unexpected journey filled with romance, comedy, and adventure. While the mysteries of the past are uncovered and the dangers of the present grow, old friends and new enemies reveal that this familiar kingdom harbors many secrets.
In the various tellings of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Gaston is a chauvinistic hunter who wants to forcibly marry Belle simply because she is the most beautiful girl in the village. He hates reading and independent women and would rather flex his muscles in the local tavern than put effort into actually understanding the object of his desire. Guess we’ll find out how he got this way! Or maybe he’s just always been like this?
Production on this series is set to begin in spring 2022. It will premiere on Disney Plus.