A screenshot of the little mermaid 2023 live action film from disney depicting Halle Bailey as ariel.

The Little Mermaid (2023 Live-action Movie)

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Updated Sep 14, 2022 at 06:06PM EDT by Zach.

Added Sep 14, 2022 at 02:30PM EDT by Brandon.

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About

The Little Mermaid refers to the live-action Disney+ original movie that is releasing in 2023 starring Halle Bailey as the mermaid Ariel. Shortly after rumors of the film were confirmed in 2021, as well as after the first trailer reveal in 2022, various discussions, viral debates and memes about the film emerged online. Prominent topics of discussion included Disney's continued release of classic animated films as live-action adaptations, representation and the Black cast members in contrast to the animated version's original characters, which sparked a controversy in 2019 and subsequent years leading up to release.

History

2019 Cast Announcement

On July 3rd, 2019, Disney originally announced the casting of Halle Bailey of R&B duo Chloe and Halle to play Ariel in its upcoming live-action version of The Little Mermaid.[4] Following the announcement, some Twitter users voiced their displeasure with the casting choice because Ariel was portrayed as white in the 1989 animated film, while others defended the decision.

2021 Sneak Peek Images

Press and talk of The Little Mermaid continued in June 2021 with the first "sneak peek" images coming from star Halle Bailey's Instagram[1] on July 21st, 2021, including an image of her at the beach during sunset with what many believed to be a mermaid tail already on her legs. The post earned over 548,000 likes in roughly one year (shown below).


hallebailey Follow V . hallebailey and just like that..that's a wrap after auditioning for this film when i was 18 just about to turn 19, to now finishing filming through a pandemic when i turned 21 ..we have finally made it...i feel so grateful to have experienced this film in all of its glory..it has been the toughest experience being away from everything and everyone i've ever known, to feeling self doubt/ loneliness, but also feeling such freedom and perseverance as i've reached the end. this experience has made me so much stronger than i ever thought i could be. i'm so grateful to have such lovely and talented people in the cast like @jonahhauerking that will be my friend for infinito lifetimac 581,141 likes JULY 12, 2021 : Add a comment... Σ Post

September 2022 Teaser Trailer

On September 9th, 2022, the official Walt Disney Studios YouTube[2] channel uploaded the official teaser trailer for the film, slated to come out on May 23rd, 2023, which gave more of a showcase of the underwater effects and Halle herself, earning over 14.2 million views in five days (shown below).



Online Reactions

Since the movie's initial reveal in 2019 and in subsequent years leading up to the 2023 release date, there have largely been two outspoken camps reacting to the film: those who wholeheartedly embrace the movie and those who are opposed to the movie for one of a few various reasons, with Ariel's race being a primary factor in either the support or aggression towards the film.

Casting Controversy

Originating after the casting announcement in mid-2019, The Little Mermaid remake controversy emerged in July that year with mixed reactions surrounding the casting choice of Halle Bailey as Ariel in the live-action remake. At that time, several people expressed outrage that Ariel would not be white, as she was in the 1989 animated film, which ultimately led to many racially charged memes and viral debates both in favor of the decision and against it. For example, on July 3rd, 2019, Twitter user @woo-ahhh[5] tweeted "Us white girls, who grew up with The Little Mermaid, deserved a true-to-color Ariel. Disney, you made a huge mistake by hiring Halle Bailey. This is going in the TRASH," gaining a stark ratio of 5,600 replies to 170 retweets before her account was suspended (shown below).


Follow Rebeccs @woo_ahhh Us white girls, who grew up with The Little Mermaid, deserved a true-to-color Ariel. Disney, you made a huge mistake by hiring Halle Bailey. This is going in the TRASH DVD GUIDE r Suy THE LITTLE MERMAID

Contention among social media users continued into the following years, seeing another resurgence again in 2022 following the first teaser trailer's reveal on September 9th, 2022. On TikTok, many users posting under the hashtag "#hallebaileyismyariel"[6] voiced their support for Bailey's portrayal of Ariel, with over 9.5 million views on the hashtag as of September 14th, 2022. For example, on September 12th, TikToker[7] yurmom_holdhimdown posted one such reaction video using the tag, receiving over 245,000 likes and 1,500 comments in two days (seen below, left). That same day, TikToker quanxisgfffbackup also posted under the hashtag, receiving over 146,000 likes and 2,400 comments in a similar timeframe (seen below, right).


https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/7142503082209905966
https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/7142190185688648965

White Mermaid AI Trailer

On September 12th, 2022, the Twitter account @TenGazillionIQ[3] uploaded a quick snippet of Ariel from the trailer side-by-side with what he called an AI being able to "de-color" Ariel and revert her back to being a ginger, which was quickly posted by other Twitter accounts along with the claim that it would purportedly be able to completely overwrite Ariel when the official movie release happens in a short time (example shown below from since-suspended account).


Jesse (Gesi) Moriarty Erhard @vandalibm - 16h Credits to our memer Artificial Intelligence scientist @TenGazillionlQ He fixed The Little Mermaid, and turned the woke actor into a ginger white girl He says he can do fix the whole movie when it comes out with 4x A6000 in 24 hours It's over for wokecels 0:02 168.9K views 677 2,535 5,850 Jesse (Gesi) Moriarty Erhard @vandalibm - 14h Note for Twitter: This is for purely educational purposes, please do not misinterpret this in a racist way. I am just amazed by high-IQ friend who works with Artificial Intelligence and the stuff he can make, and wanted to show people his field of study. 149 1 168 686

Various Reactions


DISNEY THE LITTLE RMAID E;R @EsemicolonR Wish I could say... all the n- woooorrrrddddd... Garbage Ma... @Garbage_M.... 46m UNDER THE KNEE Culture Cra... @CultureC.... 16h First look at Halle Bailey as Ariel in #TheLittle Mermaid 175 28 ♫ WISH I COULD BREATHE ♫ This movies gonna suck This movies gonna suck

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