There was a whole lot of controversy when Disney announced that it had decided to cast R&B sensation Halle Bailey as Ariel in the Mickey Mouse House’s upcoming live-action remake of The Little Mermaid.
The 19-year-old singer might have the musical chops for the part, but fans were concerned that Bailey looked nothing like the red-headed mermaid that everyone came to love in Disney’s original animated classic. Of course, many were eager to defend Disney’s casting decision, saying that they appreciated the studio’s attempt at making strides towards inclusion and diversity.
Speaking in an interview with Variety, Bailey was asked about what she felt towards the backlash and Disney’s decision to cast her in The Little Mermaid live-action remake.
“I feel like I’m dreaming and I’m just grateful and I don’t pay attention to the negativity,” she told the entertainment news outlet, “I just feel like this role was something bigger than me, and greater. It’s going to be beautiful. I’m just so excited to be a part of it.”
We’re glad to hear that Bailey isn’t letting all the negativity get to her. Though we would have wanted to see a red-head play the role, we’re pretty glad to see Disney diversifying its cast.
Aside from Bailey, other actors have also been cast in the film, Crazy Rich Asians’ Awkwafina has also been set to play Scuttle the seagull. Room’s Jacob Trembley has been cast as Ariel’s BFF, Flounder. Meanwhile, Oscar-nominated actress Melissa McCarthy has been approached to play Ursula, the sea witch.
The Little Mermaid remake has yet to receive a release date but we’ll update everyone as soon as we get word.