The tale may be old as time, but this bit of casting is brand new!

Dan Stevens, best known for his role as Matthew Crowley in the soapy period drama Downton Abbey, has officially been cast as the Beast opposite Emma Watson's Belle! Watson took to Twitter to joyfully announce the newest addition to the Beauty and the Beast cast.




Stevens joins an already stacked cast of Luke Evans as Gaston and Emma Thompson as Mrs. Potts. Even properly polished and suited up, you can immediately see why they selected him for the role. Don't take my word for it, just look at these two side-by-side:



With a little help from the hair and make-up department, and Stevens will look right at home stomping around his castle in no time. The Beast is the gruff and highly territorial prince in disguise, but there's a heart of gold underneath there that only Belle can uncover. Stevens has run the gamut of charming leads (Downtown Abbey) to brutally badass soldier, so he's well-suited to depict all sides of the multifaceted Beast.

Dan Stevens may not be a household name yet, but here are six reasons why he will make a great Beast.

1. He's got an undeniably dashing accent



Between Luke Evans and the two Emmas, this version of Beauty and the Beast is shaping up to be a trip to the United Kingdom (an interesting choice for a story set in France), and I don't think I would have it any other way.