Disney fans, rejoice! Well, that’s only if you like your mermaids Black and her red locs to be well…loc’d. This Friday, the trailer was finally released for the live action remake of The Little Mermaid starring our favorite sweet underwater songstress, Halle Bailey.
The trailer opens with a beautiful vision of aquatic wildlife, and as we follow the scene, we catch a glimpse of a shimmering tail swimming towards the light. As we begin to hear the slow and soulfully sung updated rendition of “Part of Your World,” we get the first glimpse of our new Ariel singing towards the surface of the sea. With bare shoulders, beautiful brown eyes, and her signature loc’d tresses donning a new red hue, Bailey sweetly sings her character’s despair.
“Wish I could be…part of that world,” she sings with a voice angelic enough to bring a tear to any eye. (I might have shed one or two during the minute and twenty-three second clip.)
The film, set to release in May of 2023 is a reenvisioning of the 1989 classic, where Ariel was originally being portrayed by singer and actress Jodi Benson. The storyline is as much as you remember it. Mermaid Ariel falls in love with land human Prince Eric. Her overbearing and protective father who is prejudiced against humans, refuses to allow her to interact with Eric, or from spending too much time above water at all. Now I won’t spoil it for those of you who are unfamiliar, but in true Disney fashion, there’s a villain, a few near perfect sisters, and a trusted ally or two.
Speaking of the cast, the 2023 remake is full of stars to support Bailey’s powerful performance. Prince Eric will be played by Jonah Hauer-King. Melissa McCarthy will take on the role of villainous Ursula, Javier Bardem is Ariel’s dad King Triton, Daveed Diggs voices Sebastian, Jacob Tremblay voices Flounder, and Awkwafina voices Scuttle.
Director Rob Marshall spoke with Vanity Fair last month about Bailey’s audition, and how he himself was moved to tears.
“You could tell right away that she was able to harness Ariel’s passion, her fire, her soul, her joy and her heart,” Marshall said of the young actress. He also added. “She looks stunning in red hair; not everybody does.”
“[Halle] sings that moment up an octave from the original,” he said of her rendition of the film’s showstopper, “Part of Your World.” “It’s the most chilling and the most thrilling film moment because it crystallizes not just her incredible vocal ability but the emotional passion she has in singing it.”
Bailey also spoke to Variety, and during the interview mentioned how she’s facing the backlash she’s received for portraying the fictional character.
“I want the little girl in me and the little girls just like me who are watching to know that they’re special and that they should be a princess in every single way,” she said. There’s no reason that they shouldn’t be. That reassurance was something that I needed.”