In attendance at the event, which was held at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center in New York City, were Robby Benson (voice of Beast), Paige O’Hara (voice of Belle), Angela Lansbury (voice of Mrs. Potts), Richard White (voice of Gaston), along with composer Alan Menken and producer Don Hahn.In an earlier statement, Wendy Keys, former New York Film Festival Selection Committee member and Film Society of Lincoln Center executive producer, said about the original work in progress screening in 1991:
“Because we showed it in a somewhat unfinished from–we saw animation in all its different phases–we were invited to examine the process without losing any of the narrative power or emotional impact. Astonishing!”
Keys also stated that the New York Film Festival audience was crazy about the film, giving it a standing ovation:
And as a bonus treat, Angela Lansbury sang the classic “Beauty and the Beast” ballad live with Alan Menken at the piano. Here’s a recording of it:
“There was an ecstatic outburst at the end of the evening–actually thinking back I remember many outbursts all through the screening–and it wasn’t applause. It was roars of happiness.”
What a cool event. Wish we could have been there! The New York Film Festival “Work in Progress” version of Beauty and the Beast is just one of the four versions of the film on the Walt Disney Signature edition now available on your favorite Digital HD platform and on Blu-ray Disc. Follow Beauty and the Beast on Facebook and on its official website.