Luke Evans is becoming a Disney go-to. The actor appeared as the villainious Gaston in 2017’s billion dollar hit Beauty and the Beast remake. Evans will return to the play the character for follow-up series on Disney+ and was recently tapped to play the Coachman in the studios’ upcoming Pinocchio remake.
Evans recently spoke with Collider and shared an update on both projects, which will both debut on the streamer over the next couple years.
When asked why this iteration of Pinocchio won him over, Evans revealed he was fan of the original:
Well, I’ve always loved Pinocchio. It’s a timeless story. It’s a very old fairy tale or fable, whatever you want to call it. It has very powerful messages woven into the storyline, many that I think relate to young kids and young people. I don’t think it will be anything like any iteration of Pinocchio that we’ve seen before. I’m truly excited to be a part of it. I’m very honored that Disney has chosen me to play another villain in the world of Disney. I’m surrounded by some very talented people, including Mr. Hanks. It’s just a joy to think that I’m in the same film as that legend. I’m very excited about it. Very excited, indeed.
Evans also shared an update on the Gaston/LeFou series, which reteams him with co-star Josh Gad, though, he couldn’t reveal to much as he is sworn to secrecy:
Everybody is excited about it. I think it’ll be a very entertaining journey through the past story of these characters, and also there will be many new characters that you’ve never met before, which is very exciting.
Pinocchio has Robert Zemeckis (Back to the Future) and will also star Tom Hanks (Saving Mr. Banks) as Gepetto. Production is expected to begin this April in London and Italy, so expect additional casting to be revealed in the coming weeks.
In addition to the confirmed cast, Alan Cumming (X2: X-Men United) is being considered for the roles of Honest John and Oakes Fegley (Pete’s Dragon) as Lampwick. In December, we exclusively reported that the film will be a musical, with new songs being written by Alan Silvestri and Glen Ballard.
The Beauty and the Beast series is expected to take place before the events of Beauty and the Beast and will expand upon the universe. Evans and Gad are the only actors from the film that are currently set to return. Still, Disney is expected to engage Emma Watson (Belle), Dan Stevens (Beast), Ewan McGregor (Lumiere), Ian McKellan (Cogsworth), and Emma Thompson (Mrs. Potts) for potential appearances. Multiple new songs have already been written by Alan Menken.
Once Upon a Time creators, Eddy Kitsis and Adam Horowitz are set to serve as showrunners and producers on the project alongside Gad.