In our recent interview with Beauty and the Beast producer Don Hahn, he let slip that he's currently working on a documentary about beloved lyricist Howard Ashman. Hahn, whose documentary Waking Sleeping Beauty also spoke extensively about Ashman, told us, "I haven't talked about this a lot, but I'm working right now on a documentary about Howard... he's one of the great songwriters of our generation and of the 20th century, and his life was cut short, and there's so much of him in this film." He added, "To be able to pay tribute through a documentary or through a film like Beauty and the Beast is terrific, and most of the audience will know Howard or his name, but to you and me he means a lot and he means so much of a huge part of the kind of Disney legacy that's what our generation grew up with as filmmakers or as audience members."
Howard Ashman, who along with Alan Menken penned songs for films like The Little Mermaid and Aladdin, passed away in 1991 at the age of 40. His classic songs can be heard in the new live-action Beauty and the Beast.