Halle Bailey revealed that the backlash she received for playing a Disney princess was not so unexpected as she already saw that coming.
The star shared her experience working in ‘The Little Mermaid’ in a recent interview with The Face. As a Black person, you just expect it and it’s not really a shock anymore. When [Chlöe and I] first signed to Parkwood, B” – that’s Beyoncé to you and me – “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 [the biggest Disney fan event] and I was so happy. I didn’t see any of the negativity,” she said on the backlash she received.
‘It’s a lot more modern’
The singer further talked about the latest version of The Little Mermaid. “What’s beautiful about this version of The Little Mermaid is that it’s a lot more modern. Bright young women sick of swimmin’ ready to stand. When we saw it, when we were younger, she gave up everything for the guy. But I don’t think [that] reflects modern women today. So [now] it’s more about Ariel finding freedom for herself because of this world that she’s obsessed with.” Prince Eric, the male lead “is a cherry on top. But it’s not all about him,” she said.
She further added, “I felt like God was lining up themes in my life with the character. Ariel has this longing for something more. She doesn’t quite know what it is yet, but she has to be brave in order to find it on her own. Being away from everybody for the first time in my life, I really loved those themes of knowing that it’s OK to be fearful and pushing through it.”
‘The Little Mermaid’ will arrive in theaters on May 26, 2023.