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Emma Watson reckons Belle from 'Beauty and the Beast' doesn't have Stockholm Syndrome

By
Tom Huddleston
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Stockholm Syndrome is a well-known psychological condition where prisoners begin to trust, like and even fall in love with their captors. It's long been a controversial topic to broach in the movies, and there is something a bit dubious about films like 'Out of Sight' or 'Buffalo 66', as a woman (and it is almost always a woman) develops a crush on the studly criminal holding her at gunpoint. Most kidnappers don't look like George Clooney, after all, and their intentions aren't generally very noble.

But the most famous case of Stockholm Syndrome in fiction has to be 'Beauty and the Beast', as the innocent village girl falls hard for the big fella with the bad temper, the back-hair problem and the massive castle in the country. Emma Watson has been saying all along that Disney's new retelling of the story, in which she plays the heroine Belle, would offer a feminist take on the material, and in a new interview with Entertainment Weekly she's gone into more detail.

'It’s such a good question and it’s something I really grappled with,' she said. '(But) Belle actively argues and disagrees with him constantly. She has none of the characteristics of someone with Stockholm Syndrome because she keeps her independence, she keeps that freedom of thought.' To Watson, it's more a natural progression of dislike turning to friendship, and ultimately to love.'They form a friendship first and that gap in the middle where there is this genuine sharing, the love builds out of that, which in many ways I actually think is more meaningful than a lot of love stories, where it was love at first sight.'

Disney have also released a new featurette 'Bringing Beauty to Life', taking a closer look at the film and featuring chat from Watson and co-star Dan Stevens. 

Emma Watson on why Belle is a feminist heroine

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