Disney’s live-action remake train just keeps on rolling, and the next stop is the live-action version of The Little Mermaid. There’s a lot of talk about who is in negotiation for the different parts but it looks like we’re confirmed on our lead, the titular mermaid herself. Singer Halle Bailey will be the film’s Ariel.

Bailey is a singer by trade, part of the R&B duo Chloe x Halle, but she has been doing acting work in the spin-off Grown-ish. And as expected, the casting of a Black actress as Ariel, who is white in the original animated film, has caused some conversation:

“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,” said director Rob Marshall in a statement.

There are other negotiations in the air. Melissa McCarthy is in talks to play the villain Ursula the Sea Witch. There is two more confirmed cast members: Jacob Tremblay playing fishy side-kick Flounder and Awkwafina as the mixed-up seagull Scuttle. Marc Platt, Marshall, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and John DeLuca will all produce. Alan Menken, the original film’s composer, will be back to write new music with Miranda working on lyrics.

Production on The Little Mermaid is set to begin in early 2020.

About The Author

Sara Roncero-Menendez

A reporter by trade, Sara is a lover of horror, sci-fi, and all things pop culture. From indies to classics to even the strangest schlock, all movies and TV shows are fair game. She believes Batman is the most fascinating superhero, and that Silent Hill is one of the best horror franchises ever made (as long as you don't count the movies). Fun Fact: The only movie Sara will not rewatch is The Room -- once was more than enough.