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Watson in Beauty and the Beast role

Actress Emma Watson will play Belle in a live-action remake of Disney's animated classic Beauty and the Beast.

The 24-year-old, who shot to fame as Hermione in the Harry Potter film franchise and is now a Goodwill Ambassador for UN Women, made the announcement to fans in a Facebook post.

"(Beauty and the Beast) was such a big part of my growing up, it almost feels surreal that I'll get to dance to 'Be Our Guest' and sing 'Something There'," Watson wrote.

"My six-year-old self is on the ceiling - heart bursting. Time to start some singing lessons. I can't wait for you to see it."

The film will be directed by Bill Condon and produced by Mandeville Films' David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman, Disney said in a blog post.

Production is expected to begin later this year.

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