Actor Allusion: Cogsworth is a lot like David Ogden Stiers's M*A*S*H character, Major Charles Emerson Winchester III; in fact, like much like Charles, Stiers gave Cogsworth an accent to emphasize what an uptight snob he can be.
In the fantasy computer game King's Quest VI which said series references and spoofs all kinds of fantasy, fairy tales and mythology. Robbie Benson plays the protagonist, Prince Alexander, who at one point meets the game's own interpretation of Beauty and the Beast. One Non Standard Game Over has Alexander turning into a beast himself.
Jackie Chan was actually the Asian voice of the Beast, and sung a Chinese version of the classic theme song from Angela Lansbury, Celine Dion and Peabo Bryson. This got referenced in the final season of his cartoon Jackie Chan Adventures when he absorbs a beastly power.
The woman who says: "Good Day!" in Belle is clearly voiced by Paige O'Hara.
David Ogden Stiers (Cogsworth) also did the opening narration.
In the Brazilian dub, Garcia Júnior voiced both Beast and Gaston. Although it sometimes happen in Brazilian dubs, actors very rarely voice two major characters, as well as the main hero and the main villain.
Author Existence Failure: Subverted with Howard Ashman. Despite passing away eight months before the film's release, he managed to complete all the songs with Menken.
Creator's Apathy: Despite sparing no expense in designing the Beast, the animators openly admit that they put little effort in designing his human form since they knew the audience had already endeared themselves to the Beast's monster form and wouldn't care what he looked liked as a human.
"Human Again", animated and inserted into the 2002 IMAX reissue after it had already appeared in the stage musical. "Something There" replaced it in the original cut to remove interludes of the Enchanted Objects tracking ambiguously long periods of time for Belle and the Beast to fall in love, which the writers decided would make viewers worry for Maurice's safety during his off-screen search for Belle (the play and the Extended Version use versions of "Human Again" that edit out these interludes). Jeffrey Katzenberg also ordered "Human Again" removed because he felt it was "redundant".
The Beast was supposed to have a song of his own but it never made it past the pre-production stage. The stage musical makes up for this by giving him two songs and a reprise all to himself.
Doing It for the Art: Howard Ashman literally worked until the day he died, mere weeks before the film was finished. And even beforehand, he was directing the voice recording sessions via telephone while in bed, wasting away from AIDS.
Dueling Movies: An American Tail: Fievel Goes West and Rock-A-Doodle were in theaters at the same time, with Fievel even opening on the same weekend as Beauty. Needless to say it wasn't much of a fight - all other movies were pretty much Curb-Stomped as audiences flocked to the one with a story that broke through the Animation Age Ghetto, with watershed animation and with Broadway-caliber songs, as well as the still-evolving idea that such an important female character could be anything other than a Damsel in Distress. Fievel goes West still did okay, most likely due to having Steven Spielberg's name attached, but Rock-A-Doodle was completely crushed and began the downfall of Don Bluth's animation studio.
There was also Felix the CatThe Movie that limped into theaters a few months prior, and this movie blasted that one apart as well (the character of Sonic the Hedgehog, who premiered between Howard Ashman's death and BATB's theatrical premiere note Specifically, around the Walt Disney Classics VHS release of The Jungle Book which includes a Jeffrey Katzenberg-hosted sneak peak for Beauty and the Beast prior to the film , didn't help that film's chances either due to Sonic being a Spiritual Successor in some form to Felix).
Jossed: Many believe the Beast's "real" name to be Adam, but Word of God, including the animators, scriptwriters, and the Disney website, has stated he does not have an assigned name. Nonetheless, it was officially included in a Disney Princess quiz game, the D-Show CD, and even on some marketing for the Disney Princes.
Keep Circulating the Tapes: The only home release of the original theatrical cut to retain both its aspect ratio and its color scheme is the Walt Disney ClassicsLaserDisc that came out two years after the original theatrical release.note It came out on laser a year late to avoid video piracy, due to the format's lack of copy-protection and also thanks to Disney's rather slow international rollout of the film, which meant it wouldn't be available on video in most markets until 1993. This specific LD and the "Work-In-Progress" LD open with the then-animation-standard 1986 Sorcerer Mickey Walt Disney Home Video logo instead of The Classics rhombus diamond Vanity Plate. As noted on IMDB, each of the DVD and Blu-ray releases, while they present the movie in widescreen (unlike the Pan and ScanVHS tapes), made a number of other changes. Most noticeably, the color scheme was altered for the 2002 IMAX re-release, which actually makes the Beast very visible when he is first seen in the film, well before he meets Belle. The 2010 restoration uses a color scheme that looks neither as bright as in '02, or as dark as in '91.
The Other Darrin: As of 2011, Page O'Hara was replaced by Julie Nathanson as Belle due to O'Hara's voice changing significantly over the course of twenty years. However, O'Hara still paints Belle for Disney Fine Art and continues to do promotional appearances for Disney.
In the House of Mouse episode "Mickey and the Culture Clash", she was voiced by Jodi Benson, who ironically was the first choice for Belle.
After Jerry Orbach's death, Jeff Bennett took the role of Lumiere starting from Kingdom Hearts and so on.
Angela Lansbury could not reprise her role as Mrs. Potts in the second DTV sequel Belle's Magical World. Anne Rogers replaced her.
Chip has been replaced several times due to all of his previous Voice Actors going through puberty. He was voiced by Bradley Pierce in the original, then later Haley Joel Osment (Enchanted Christmas), and then Greg Grudt (Belle's Magical World).
Recycled: The Series: Sing Me A Story, which starred Belle, a talking cat puppet and a bunch of modern day kids as she would read books to them, which were really Classic Disney Shorts with her dubbing over all the songs. It had nothing to do with Beauty and the Beast besides Belle. (Although Gaston would make a few appearances, albeit being much Lighter and Softer.)
Saved from Development Hell: Walt himself had tried to develop an adaptation of this story back in the 1940s, but no one could figure out how to make the second act (the heroine's stay in the castle) work.
Shrug of God: Some employees at Disney offhandedly tease that Gaston was the one who killed Bambi's mother.
Cogsworth mentioning that "promises you don't intend to keep" are among the usual things given to ladies was an adlib by David Ogden Stiers when he thought the advice as scripted wasn't sufficiently bad.
The special edition added the song "Human Again", a song originally fully animated but cut for time reasons, where the servants clean up the whole castle. The animators ultimately chose to leave the West Wing ruined after Belle left the castle to save Maurice, rationalizing that the Beast wrecked it again during his Heroic B.S.O.D.. And to really drive the point home, they add in the sounds of glass breaking as Belle rides off.
Speaking of "Human Again" Paige O'Hara and Robby Benson ad-libbed their little "Twoe?- -Two" exchange.
The dummy lyrics written for Gaston's song were so impressive that they became the actual words used.
The Beast Face Palming at several points in the movie come from Robby Benson doing it in recording sessions when he was getting tired and hoarse from screaming all the time.
Troubled Production: Notwithstanding Walt's attempts to get the film off the ground, the final version had a rough road. The animators were given no vacation time during the film's production in order for everything to be absolutely flawless, partially owing to Jeff Katzenberg's admitted impatience with the medium and Ashman's failing health (Ashman alerted Katzenberg that he was dying, which led to Katzenberg forcing production to move to Ashman's side of the country to accommodate him). Several of the artists' marriages were broken up as a result; some artists even claimed to buying new clothing on their break time because they couldn't go home to do laundry, and plenty more up and quit. The grueling work clearly shows, but Katzenberg decided not to do this again when he saw how miserable his staff was as a result.
Also, in the final fight, Gaston falling off the castle was intended to be deliberate, with Gaston actually letting go after stabbing the Beast (there were originally supposed to be two stab wounds that he inflicted), and while falling he was also going to laugh like the Joker in The Dark Knight under similar circumstances. For some reason, this was vetoed. Also, Gaston's line before nearly being hung over the edge was "It's over, Beast! Time to die!", but they changed it to "Belle is mine!" in order to fit Belle back into the scene and also to omit violence (Gaston's lip sync to the line was not changed however). There was apparently also supposed to be a scene where Gaston and D'Arque go into the actual asylum area.
There was an earlier draft where Gaston had Beast at his mercy and was prepared to shoot him, only for Belle to throw a rock at him and cause him to fall off a cliff. He survives with a broken leg, only to be mauled by several wolves. This was eventually reused in the ending for The Lion King when Scar is killed by the hyenas, ironically because its original ending was cut for the same reasons that ending was cut.
As mentioned, the Beast was actually supposed to have an entire song to himself, which was supposed to happen after he chases Belle out of the West Wing, but for whatever reason this was scrapped and he only had a brief singing line in "Something There". However, he does get a song in the stage musical called "If I Can't Love Her" (which happens, wouldn't you know it, right after he chases Belle out of the West Wing!).
Belle was originally going to be voiced by Jodi Benson, the voice of Ariel in The Little Mermaid, it was decided that Belle needed a more "European" sounding voice. Howard Ashman remembered working with Paige O'Hara and suggested she try out for the part.
The song Be our guest was originally going to be sung to Maurice, with several parts of the song being well into the animation stage like this, until the creators asked themselves "Wait a minute, Belle is the protagonist. Shouldn't they be singing to her?" And thus it was changed.
Rupert Everett auditioned for the role of Gaston, but was told by the directors he didn't sound arrogant enough. He remembered this when he voiced Prince Charming in Shrek 2. (He did end up playing a villain in a Disney movie, though- as Sanford Scolex/Dr. Claw in the 1999 Inspector Gadget adaptation.)
The entire movie in fact was initially intended to be much different, being much closer to the original tale, dating back as early as 1989: Basically, Maurice was intended to be a merchant like in the original tale, and also like in the original tale, Belle's family lost their entire estate thanks to several of Maurice's ships being lost at sea, forcing them to move to a cottage, and eventually are nearly about to lose that as well thanks to Maurice being unable to pay his taxes (thanks in large part to the aforementioned loss of his fortune). Maurice was also going to sell his late wife's music box to get enough money to pay taxes, explaining why he left and eventually got imprisoned by the Beast. In addition, Belle would have a kind younger sister named Clarice, a pet cat named Charley, their horse was originally named Orson, and she was to have a snooty aunt named Marguerite who effectively stood in for Belle's wicked sisters from the original tale. In addition, Gaston was, as noted above, a marquis, and Belle politely turned him down. Oh, and eventually Gaston would enter a duel with Beast and eventually be punched over a wall after attempting to use his rapier to stab him in the back after being defeated, and the servants spoke in pantomime and apparently were enchanted to begin with rather than cursed servants. This draft can be found on the Diamond Edition Blu-ray and DVD, and was cut at Jeffrey Katzenberg's request because it was "too dark and too dramatic" and "it didn't work at all." This resulted in then-director Richard Purdum quitting the film, and led to Katzenberg putting Howard Ashman & Alan Menken on and Trousdale & Wise taking the director's helm (this forced Ashman to take himself out of Aladdin, but he remained committed to Beauty and the Beast even after telling Katzenberg he had AIDS and would die in months).
Regis Philbin auditioned for the role of the Beast. Yes.
Scheduling conflicts with Star Trek: The Next Generation forced Patrick Stewart to turn down the role of Cogsworth (this was one of at least three Disney roles Patrick Stewart was unable to take; TNG also forced Stewart to not take the role of Jafar in Aladdin and Goiliath in Gargoyles).
Many scenes were storyboarded but never animated. Those include Maurice actually visiting the fair (with a song called "The Invention Convention") before getting lost on the way home, a scene where Gaston visits the Asylum and a scene where the Beast is seen dragging a carcass of an animal he killed. Both were considered too gruesome for the film (and it was feared that the latter would cause the audience to lose sympathy for the Beast) and the ideas were dropped.
The original "cute" character of the movie was a music box, which was supposed to be a musical version of Dopey from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. But when the character Chip's role was expanded, the music box idea was scrapped. However the music box can be seen for a brief moment on a table next to Lumière just before the fight between the enchanted objects and the villagers in the Beast's castle.
Howard Ashman started lyric work on at least two songs for The Beast. He wanted to show things from his perspective as he felt previous versions had placed enough focus on the Beauty character, and since he has the greatest Character Development, the Beast was the main character anyway. For one reason or another they were scrapped but some of the ideas were worked into the character, like the anger than went with his despair and the Broadway took inspiration from his work to craft "If I Can't Love Her".
In Waking Sleeping Beauty, director Kirk Wise mentioned that Ashman wanted the Beast to start out as a "little naughty boy". To Kirk, this brought up images of Eddie Munster, and he told Ashman he and Trousdale thought it was "a cheap shot". Ashman did not take kindly to this at all, allegedly, if the film's doodle of Ashman breathing fire on Wise like a dragon is any indication.