Halle Bailey Responds To Racist Backlash Over ‘The Little Mermaid’ Casting | Film News
In case you were unaware, 19 years-old R&B singer Halle Bailey, best known for performing in Chloe X Halle with her older sister, has recently been casted by Disney to play Ariel in their upcoming The Little Mermaid reboot last month.
What’s the problem? Well following the announcement, fans took to social media criticizing the casting with the hashtag #NotMyAriel complaining about the fact that Bailey, of African American decent, does not look like Disney’s original version of Ariel, who was originally drawn as white.
Following the racist backlash online, Disney has responded via their Freeform network Instagram page:
“Yes. The original author of The Little Mermaid was Danish (…) Danish mermaids can be black because Danish *people* can be black.(…) So after all this is said and done, and you still cannot get past the idea that choosing the incredible, sensational, highly-talented, gorgeous Halle Bailey is anything other than the INSPIRED casting that it is because she ‘doesn’t look like the cartoon one,’ oh boy, do I have some news for you…about you”
The starlet has responded by admitting she’s turning a blind eye to the naysayers:
“I feel like I’m dreaming, and I’m just grateful. And I don’t pay attention to the negativity. I just feel like this role is something bigger than me, and greater, and it’s going to be beautiful. I’m just so excited to be a part of it“.
Also, the original actor who voiced Ariel in the 1989 animated version of The Little Mermaid previously spoke out in support of Bailey, saying: “What you bring to the table in a character as far as their heart and their spirit is what really counts.”
Can’t wait to see the reboot.
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