Embracing the Magic: Halle Bailey’s Inspiring Journey as the New Ariel

KEY TAKEAWAYS
Halle Bailey's portrayal of Ariel adds diversity to the film, providing a fresh perspective on the iconic character and breaking away from traditional interpretations.
The live-action adaptation uses innovative technology, such as the tuning fork mechanism and Anyma technology, to create a believable underwater world and enable actors to perform without the need for facial capture.
The film features a diverse cast, with each actor bringing their own unique take on classic roles, adding depth and nuance to the story.
The live-action adaptation, directed by Rob Marshall, reimagines the timeless tale while maintaining the beauty and magic of the original film and the Hans Christian Andersen tale it was based on.
Actor Josh Gad addresses the backlash surrounding Halle Bailey's casting, emphasizing the importance of representation in media and the positive aspects of diverse characters on screen.

 

Halle Bailey, the new Ariel in Disney’s upcoming live-action adaptation of The Little Mermaid, has been capturing the hearts of fans everywhere.

The 23-year-old Atlanta native recently visited Disney World as part of her role as celebrity ambassador for the Disney Dreamers Academy, a program aimed at creating opportunities for Black teens from underrepresented communities.

A heartwarming video of Bailey being embraced by a young fan named Mila Rose has since gone viral, showcasing the impact of her new role as Ariel.

A Timeless Tale Reimagined

Disney’s live-action adaptation of The Little Mermaid is part of an ongoing trend of bringing animated classics to life.

Director Rob Marshall, who began his Hollywood career with a version of Annie in 1999, was drawn to the project due to his love for the original film and its role in sparking a resurgence of musicals.

He and producer John DeLuca aimed to add depth to the story while maintaining the beauty and magic of the original film and the Hans Christian Andersen tale it was based on.

Breaking New Ground

Halle Bailey’s Ariel breaks new ground with her red locs and darker skin, setting her apart from the more traditional image of the character.

Marshall aimed to provide a deeper insight into Ariel’s heart and mind, showcasing her curiosity and passion.

The live-action adaptation also features new songs, as well as new characters and relationships, such as Queen Selina (played by Noma Dumezweni), the mother of Prince Eric (Jonah Hauer-King).

Innovative Approach to Create an Underwater World

The live-action adaptation of Disney’s The Little Mermaid brought new challenges for the filmmakers, as they had to create a believable underwater world filled with vibrant characters and musical numbers.

Director Rob Marshall and producer John DeLuca were eager to take on the task, having previously worked on Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and Mary Poppins Returns.

A Complicated but Rewarding Process

Creating an underwater musical was no easy feat. Marshall and DeLuca spent months in Los Angeles working with screenwriter David Magee to develop an outline that addressed the technical aspects of shooting underwater scenes.

The previsualization phase followed, during which all underwater and some above-water scenes were meticulously choreographed and staged.

The result was an intricate plan of action that allowed the actors to feel fully immersed in their underwater world.

The trailer, which debuted during the Oscars, has garnered millions of views on YouTube, but also faced a significant number of dislikes and negative comments. Ever since Bailey’s casting in 2019, there has been a wave of racist remarks, with #NotMyAriel trending on social media.

Harnessing the Power of Technology

To achieve the illusion of swimming, the actors were placed in a tuning fork, a mechanism that locks them into a harness capable of spinning and rotating.

This method, previously used in Disney’s Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, allowed the actors to move freely and naturally as if they were underwater.

Other times, they were on wires or a combination of both, requiring them to maintain a strong core and remain physically fit.

Furthermore, Marshall employed the Anyma technology, which enabled them to film a portion of an actor and have technology take over when needed.

This innovative system was used in movies like Avengers: Endgame and the live-action Aladdin, allowing the actors to perform without the need for facial capture.

Diverse Cast Brings a Fresh Perspective

Halle Bailey, who plays Ariel in the new adaptation, brings her own unique touch to the iconic character.

Bailey’s Ariel has red hair and a powerful singing voice, which showcases her incredible range and ability to convey emotion.

The casting of Bailey, a young African-American actress and singer, adds diversity to the film and provides a fresh perspective on the character.

Her portrayal has been praised for breaking away from traditional interpretations of Ariel while still maintaining the essence of the beloved character.

Supporting Bailey in the cast are Jonah Hauer-King as Prince Eric, Javier Bardem as King Triton, and Melissa McCarthy as the villainous Ursula.

Each actor brings their own unique take on the classic roles, adding depth and nuance to the story.

Standing Up for Ariel: Josh Gad Addresses Backlash

Josh Gad, known for his roles in “Frozen” and the live-action “Beauty and the Beast,” recently addressed the backlash surrounding the trailer of Disney’s live-action adaptation of “The Little Mermaid,” specifically targeting those who took issue with Halle Bailey, an R&B singer, playing the lead role of Ariel.

On Twitter, Gad called out these individuals as “broken and pathetic” for focusing on the skin color of a fictional character.

The trailer, which debuted during the Oscars, has garnered millions of views on YouTube, but also faced a significant number of dislikes and negative comments. Ever since Bailey’s casting in 2019, there has been a wave of racist remarks, with #NotMyAriel trending on social media.

In response, Bailey has focused on the positive aspects of representation in media and the importance of diverse characters on screen.

Support for Bailey has come from various sources, including Jodi Benson, the original voice of Ariel, who praised Bailey’s performance and described her as “stunning.”

Rachel Zegler, the lead in “West Side Story” and future Snow White, also expressed her support for Bailey.

The live-action “Little Mermaid” is directed by Rob Marshall and features new songs by Alan Menken and Lin-Manuel Miranda.

The cast includes Javier Bardem as King Triton, Jonah Hauer-King as Prince Eric, Daveed Diggs as Sebastian, Jacob Tremblay as Flounder, and Awkwafina as Scuttle. The film is set to be released in theaters on May 26th.

Craig Miller

Read Full Biography
Back to previous

You May Also Like

Art News

AI Art Controversy: Real Art or Technological Illusion?

Harvard artists and professors advocate for an open approach to AI, seeing it as an extension of the artistic toolkit…

Art News

The Best Rapper of All Time: The Evolution of Rap Since 1979

Rap music has existed for decades, with someone new stepping up every year to claim the spotlight. There’ve been many…

Art News

The Boys Season 4 Preview: What You Need to Know about the Upcoming Season

The Boys Season 4 kicks off on Amazon Prime Video on June 13, 2024, with a triple-episode launch. Here’s what…

  • mail
  • facebook
  • twitter

related articles

Art News

Unprecedented TV Show Cancellations Impact Viewing Habits

Art News

How Social Media Influences Adolescent Development

Art News

NY Times Architecture Critic Advocates for HOK’s Penn Station Transformation Plan


Articles About Art News

The Intrigue of Invisible Creators: Famous Anonymous Artists and Secrets Behind Their Identities

April 9, 2024

Top Unforgettable Horror Movies Too Disturbing to Watch Twice

April 9, 2024

Transforming Perceptions Through Art: A Trans-Led Collective’s Journey in India

April 6, 2024

The Evolution of Horror Novels: From Ancient Scares to Modern Frights

April 6, 2024

Philadelphia’s Must-See Exhibitions in 2024: Best Philadelphia Museums & Exhibits

April 4, 2024