Beyonce's protege, Halle Bailey will be the first black woman to portray Ariel in the live-action remake of the film, "The Little Mermaid." She has the "intrinsic qualities necessary to play this iconic role," according to director Rob Marshall.
Halle Bailey will be part of Disney’s world soon. The young star from the R&B group Chloe x Halle has been chosen to portray Ariel in the live-action remake of “Little Mermaid.”
Halle’s film debut marks a milestone for Disney in choosing a young black woman to portray the singing mermaid for the first time. According to director Rob Marshall, the 19-year-old was a perfect fit for the part.
“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,” Marshall said in a statement announcing Halle’s selection.
Halle first rose to fame alongside her older sister Chloe Bailey as a result of their YouTube covers of Beyonce who took notice of them. In 2015, the concert superstar signed them under her record label, Parkwood Entertainment and the following year, they opened for her during the European leg of her “Lemonade” tour.
While Halle’s voice is a shoo-in for her role as Ariel, she was able to hone her acting skills through her participation in Freeform’s “Grown-ish.” She portrays a track-and-field athlete in the series and is also joined by Chloe in the show.
Halle’s first venture into film will see her acting opposite the likes of Melissa McCarthy who’ll be playing the movie’s antagonist, Ursula. Awkwafina and Jacob Tremblay are also reportedly part of the cast.
No doubt, Halle’s mentor Beyonce is thrilled with this new development especially since the 37-year-old A-lister herself will soon be gracing the big screen in another Disney classic. She plays Nala in the live-action remake of “Lion King” which is set to be released on July 19.
The mother-of-three is pleased with her latest project because she gets to share it with her family.
“I’m so excited for my kids to see it, but it means even more to share this experience and this culture of “The Lion King” with my mother and my family,” she told Oprah Winfrey during an OWN special celebrating her mother, Tina Knowles-Lawson’s “Wearable Art Gala.”
Halle is lucky to have Beyonce in her corner as the celebrated star is the perfect example of someone she can look up to. The neophyte revealed to People last year how grateful she is to be guided by the former “Destiny’s Child” star.
“Being in the midst of having such a beautiful mentor like her, we were allowed to explore with our creativity,” she told the publication. “And we’re so thankful to her for providing her platform and always reminding us that you don’t have to dumb down your art for the world — you can keep creating new, innovative things and let the world catch up to you.”
Halle appears to have taken to heart Beyonce’s advice with her latest project making history with her participation. Here’s looking forward to the success of “The Little Mermaid” which begins production next year.