Emma Watson’s Belle Is The Feminist Icon Her French Village Deserves

Photo: Matt Baron/REX/Shutterstock.
Emma Watson just revealed what Belle's job will be in the upcoming live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast. And no surprise, the gig is as feminist as the actress herself. In the latest issue of Entertainment Weekly, Watson talks about updating her character's backstory in a way that specifically answers the question: What does she do? “I was like, ‘Well, there was never very much information or detail at the beginning of the story as to why Belle didn’t fit in, other than she liked books. Also what is she doing with her time?'" Watson explained. "So, we created a backstory for her." In a clever twist on the original, Watson's Belle is now an inventor. “In the animated movie," Watson explained, "it’s her father who is the inventor, and we actually co-opted that for Belle." This much-needed upgrade also explains why the whole provincial town hates her so much for having her nose stuck in a book. Turns out, Belle "invented a kind of washing machine so that instead of doing laundry, she could sit and use that time to read instead." Turns out it's this beauty's brains that make everyone jealous. That's just the way we like our Disney heroines. Now, where can we get one of these washers?

Beauty and the Beast
hits theaters March 17, 2017.

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