Rita Moreno, H.E.R. celebrate inclusivity of 'Beauty & the Beast 30th Celebration' cast, crew

ByGeorge Pennacchio OTRC logo
Friday, December 16, 2022
'Beauty & the Beast 30th' celebrates diversity, inclusion
'That makes the all the difference for all those little girls who get to see somebody who looks like them.' Cast of new 'Beauty & the Beast' ABC special celebrates inclusivity of cast and crew in 30th anniversary tribute.

HOLLYWOOD -- To celebrate the 30th anniversary of "Beauty and the Beast," Disney is inviting you to "Be Our Guest" for a new television event. This classic musical has been updated for a new generation.

Rita Moreno is one of the actors participating in "Beauty and the Beast: a 30th Celebration." She's taking on the role of narrator and host. Everyone involved with this special event was thrilled to see its inclusive casting.

"It's not just Puerto Rican, Black, Latino -- it's everybody. It's older dancers," said Moreno. "I've never seen that ever."

"Ages, genres, from Shania Twain to Martin Short, to David Alan Grier, to H.E.R. Diversity with a capital D for this entire cast, it's crazy!" said Joshua Henry.

"I'm really excited for people to just see Belle's strength, and of course, I'm bringing the 'H.E.R.' flavor. I'm a Black and Filipina Belle," said H.E.R. "That makes all the difference for all those little girls who get to see somebody who looks like them. It's the way it should be because everybody should be able to see themselves and say I can do that!"

Moreno has been doing it all for seven decades. She turned 91 this month -- and offered her secret to staying healthy, vivacious and young at heart.

"It is a frame of mind," said Moreno. "I'm one of the happiest people I know!"

The Wonderful World of Disney and ABC present "Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration" is now available to stream on Disney+ and Hulu.

The Walt Disney Co. is the parent company of this ABC station.