Thursday night, ABC airs the all-star special Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration, a tribute to the classic animated film that stars H.E.R. as Belle and Josh Groban as The Beast, plus Shania Twain, Martin Short, David Alan Grier and Rita Moreno. Groban says the special is an "ambitious" production that isn't quite a movie and isn't quite a musical ... it's more of a hybrid.
"The amount of people and effort that it took to put this together was really quite incredible," he tells ABC Audio. "We're in costume and singing the songs and acting some of the scenes, and there's puppetry ... and it's just going to be a really good time."
Speaking of costumes, Groban says the promotional photos have deliberately hidden what he'll look like as The Beast. "We wanted to interpret the character in a way that was artistically just a different vibe than everybody has seen," he teases. "So it is very beastly and it is very large and I can't wait for people to see what they've done."
Groban is also excited for people to see him singing with Oscar- and Grammy-winning R&B star H.E.R. as Belle.
"We come from different kinds of musical landscapes, but I thought we blended really, really well together," he notes. And for him, the songs they're singing are the true highlights of the project.
"Every one of us in the cast, no matter where we come from, comedy or rock or pop or wherever else, we all have hummed these melodies since we were kids," says Groban, adding, "I hope that that love and passion that we all have for it comes across in the special."
Beauty and the Beast: A 30 Celebration airs at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.