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'Belle': A look at the real-life inspiration from painting to screen

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Belle tells the inspiring true story of Dido Elizabeth Belle, the illegitimate mixed-race daughter of a Royal Navy officer in 18th century England who is taken in by her uncle. However, little was known about Dido’s life besides a 1779 painting made of her and her cousin Lady Elizabeth Murray. In this exclusive featurette, writer Misan Sagay, director Amma Asante, and star Gugu Mbatha-Raw explain how they were inspired by the painting and how the work of art has influenced the film’s creative message and story and place in history. Take a look below:

In addition to Mbatha-Raw, Belle stars Tom Wilkinson, Emily Watson, Matthew Goode, Miranda Richardson, and Tom Felton. Belle is in select theaters now.