Luke Evans is already receiving rave reviews for his role as Beauty and the Beast's intimidating specimen Gaston, but he's admitted he thought he might have been offered the role of the Beast first.
The actor is known for taking on tough action roles (like Immortals and Fast & Furious 6) and admitted it took him a while to get his head around his "freak of nature" character.
"I did wonder why they hadn't offered me the Beast but they came straight for Gaston," the Girl on the Train star told Digital Spy.
"The casting director knew Gaston was for me. I came in at the 11th hour, and it was always going to be Gaston, but it was hard to get my head around because he's a freak of nature, isn't he?
"He's a larger than life man."
Dan Stevens plays the Beast opposite Emma Watson's strong, modern-day Belle in Disney's live-action adaptation.
Josh Gad stars as Gaston's hilarious manservant LeFou, who director Bill Condon says struggles with his feelings for Gaston, and features in Disney's "first exclusively gay moment".
Meanwhile, Luke has insisted that the film stays loyal to the original, and has promised a magical experience for viewers.
"We've been very loyal to the original," he continued. "I went with the Gaston character and relished every minute of who he is and what he stands for, and the bad parts of him, and all the funny parts of it.
"I think people are going to love it, I really do. I've seen it and it just takes you to that place, that magical Disney place. It's so huge and the film is so beautiful and expansive and it just looks fantastic on the big screen. It just looks amazing."
Beauty and the Beast is released in cinemas across the UK on March 17.
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