Ian McKellen Joins 'Beauty & The Beast' For A Major Role & Here's Exactly Why He's Perfect For It
The release of the live-action version of my childhood favorite Disney movie, Beauty and the Beast, is upon us, and I honestly can't wait. The project has been slowly but surely releasing its amazing cast over the past several months — we've got Emma Watson in the role of Belle, Downton Abbey's Dan Stevens as The Beast, Luke Evans as Gaston and and Josh Gad as Le Fou — and now things have just got a whole lot better. How, you ask? Well, according to the Hollywood Reporter, it's been confirmed that the amazing Ian McKellen joined the live-action Beauty and the Beast as Cogsworth, the castle's resident butler-turned-hilarious clock. AMAZING, right?!
Now, McKellen has a long and illustrious Hollywood career — his IMDB page lists a whopping 106 acting credits spanning over 50 years — but frankly, I feel like Cogsworth is one of his best roles yet. McKellen is a master of snark and wry comedy, so to see him put that energy into such a silly and beloved character is bound to be amazing. Of course, McKellen could master pretty much any part he takes on, but a snarky clock requires a certain je ne sais quoi that he's got in spades.
Here are 6 reasons Ian McKellen is THE BEST — and, the best choice for Cogsworth, obviously.
He knows the true meaning of friendship
Cogsworth may seem stern and unyielding, but he's actually a pretty loyal and devoted friend. The same goes for McKellen, who knows all about loyalty to those he cares about. After all, he's BFFs with Patrick Stewart, and that says it all.
He loves animals, which should come in handy
Cogsworth fell prey to the same spell that transformed the prince into The Beast, a wild animal that everyone in the kingdom is terrified of. Cogsworth isn't terrified, of course, considering he remembers the man beneath the beast so to speak — but this should come in handy for McKellen anyway.
He knows how to take charge when needed
While Cogsworth can get a bit bossy and seem like a stick in the mud, it's just because he likes things to be orderly. McKellen is the same — he knows how to take command when it's needed and isn't afraid to be stern when the situation calls for it.
He's incredibly intelligent
Cogsworth was smart and knew how to get around the Beast's volatile moods. McKellen is clever, too — just check out his honorary Doctorate of Letters that was awarded to him by Cambridge University!
He's not afraid to be silly
You've gotta have a sense of humor to be a legendary actor with over 100 film credits to your name... and then take on the role of a cartoon clock. It's a perfect match, but a brave one, as well. Plus, it shows just how down-to-earth McKellen really is!
He's no stranger to playing beloved characters
Lord of the Rings' Gandalf is one of the most beloved fictional literary characters there is, and McKellen carried the role flawlessly — plus, he's beloved by the franchise's fans. While the audience for Beauty and the Beast is a bit different, there's no doubt fans will love McKellen as Cogsworth just as much as Lord of the Rings fans loved him as Gandalf.
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