During the 95th Academy Awards on Sunday, Disney unveiled the full trailer for its upcoming live-action adaptation of “The Little Mermaid”. The new film, directed by Rob Marshall, stars R&B singer Halle Bailey as Ariel and Melissa McCarthy as the villainous sea witch Ursula.
Two stars from the upcoming remake, Halle Bailey and Melissa McCarthy introduced the new trailer and artwork during the 95th Academy Awards on March 12, 2023 at the Dolbe Theater in Los Angeles, CA.
Up until now, we have only had teasers, so being able to view the full official trailer, for many was the icing on a the cake for Oscars 2023.
It was officially announced about four years ago that Halle Bailey would star as the titular character, Ariel herself.
“After an extensive search, it was abundantly clear that Halle possesses that rare combination of spirit, heart, youth, innocence, and substance — plus a glorious singing voice — all intrinsic qualities necessary to play this iconic role,” said director Rob Marshall.
However, not everyone was happy with the casting of Bailey as Ariel.
Immediately, the songstress’s casting met with a barrage of racists comments and, at the time, the trending hashtag #NotMyAriel.
One Twitter user wrote: @Disney I’m sorry but being a little girl with red hair Ariel was character I looked up to when I was growing up. Very upset by the choice for the remake. I will not be going to see it, you’ve ruined it for me. #notmyariel #childhoodmemoriesruined #longliveredheads #LittleMermaid pic.twitter.com/mlCwWIFoKi — Courtney Moss (@ShortNoze) July 3, 2019
Another chimed in: I guess we non-black people can’t say anything about the casting because whatever we say, we are just some racist people. I just want the movie to be like the one I watched when I was a kid. Is that too much to ask? #notmyariel — EvanMcSwag (@evanmcswag992) July 4, 2019
On the other hand, many social media users came to Bailey’s defense.
White people complaining they cast a black girl as Ariel: Disney created 49 films from 1937-2009 before delivering their first black princess with Tiana. Black girls watched an entire catalog NEVER seeing themselves. For 70 years. You spoiled, racist brats. — Hillary Monahan (@HillaryMonahan) July 3, 2019
"iM nOt rAcIsT bUt tHe LiTtLe mErMaID nEeDs tO bE wHiTe"
Spare me the nonsense that Ariel NEEDS to be white, she is a MYTHOLIGIAL SEA CREATURE.
— Skyler Shuler (@SkylerShuler) July 1, 2019
The 22-year-old singer/actress told The Face in a recent interview that, you just come to expect the racism and negativity surrounding her casting.
“As a Black person, you just expect it and it’s not really a shock anymore,” Bailey said. ”When [Chlöe and I] first signed to Parkwood, [Beyoncé] was always like: ’I never read my comments. Don’t ever read the comments.’ Honestly, when the teaser came out, I was at the D23 Expo and I was so happy. I didn’t see any of the negativity.”
She continued, “I know people are like: ’It’s not about race.’ But now that I’m her…People don’t understand that when you’re Black there’s this whole other community,” she added. “It’s so important for us to see ourselves.”
We cannot wait for May 26th. Because if you missed the moment, Bailey truly did look like the princess that she will soon portray.
The Disney The Little Mermaid remake will be directed and produced by Rob Marshall. In addition, John DeLuca, Marc Platt and Lin-Manuel Miranda will also serve as producers. The film will feature songs from the original animated classic by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, as well as new songs.
Photo Credit(s)/Featured Image: Halley Bailey Instagram; Disney