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Beauty and the Beast (La Belle et la Bête) is a French film directed by Jean Cocteau, based on the fairytale "Beauty and The Beast". It's particularly noted for its visual design, which has influenced several subsequent versions of the story.
This retelling adds the character of Avenant, a villainous suitor who is beautiful on the outside and ugly on the inside, contrasting with the Beast who is ugly on the outside and beautiful on the inside. This version may or may not be the first to include this character, but it's certainly the codifier.
The film was originally released in France in 1946, and received its US debut in 1947.
You may have been looking for Beauty and the Beast, the Disney animated feature based on this fairy tale.
This film provides examples of:
- And You Were There: Jean Marais plays both Avenant and the Beast.
- Mind Screw: The ending.
- Pivotal Wakeup: A version without the usual sinister connotations occurs during the Beast's transformation at the end.
- Prince Charming Wannabe: Avenant.
- Ugly Hero, Good-Looking Villain: The Beast and Avenant.