I am so excited about the new Beauty and the Beast film starring Emma Watson and Dan Stevens. It looks beautiful! In light of this film, I wanted to take a moment to talk about traditional fairy tales (I am not talking about literary modern ones).
Fairy tales are simply stories originating in folk lore all over the world. What interests me about fairy tales is how they adapt and change by every new retelling.
Since I mentioned Beauty and the Beast I will use that as an example. There are many different renditions of this famous fairy tale, first put to print in 1740. Most people are probably familiar with the Disney cartoon version from 1991, or other more modern interpretations like Beastly, the 1987 TV series Beauty and the Beast, or the CW remake in 2012. Just looking at these modern retellings of the last few decades (and their vast differences), one can only imagine how many differences might have been added over hundreds of years. The changes in the original fairy tale include Belle’s and the Beast’s past, the origination of the curse, Belle’s family, the Beast’s personality, and many more.
And this is not the only fairy tale that varies so much. Just look at the difference between the happy ending of the Disney movie The Little Mermaid and the tragic ending of Anderson’s Den lille havfrue (The Little Mermaid).
Even if you aren’t a writer, learning different versions of fairy tales can be interesting as well as inspiring. What is you favorite fairy tale? Are you surprised by it’s origins?