The three actors reprised their roles as the Beast, LeFou and Gaston from Disney’s upcoming live-action reboot, while Corden was not only the company’s overzealous director, but also the lead, Belle. “Daniel Day Lewis played Abraham Lincoln, Meryl Streep played Margaret Thatcher, James Corden played Belle,” the host cracked. “I think in many ways those three will always be regarded as similar – if not the same.”
After a frantic parking lot rehearsal, the show got underway with Corden leading a spirited performance of “Belle” – the opener from the 1991 animated musical – on the crosswalk before the lights changed. The company tore through similarly dangerous performances of “Gaston” and “Be Our Guest,” with car horns serving as applause.
For the finale, Corden arrived in Belle’s flowing golden gown. With a nervous Stevens, the pair danced to the film’s famous ballad, “Beauty and the Beast.” After the performance, a breathless Stevens raved: “Across that road and on the other side was everything I love about theater – and a gas station.”
The former Broadway star is reimagining the reach of late-night TV – one car ride at a time.