USA Today recently shared an enchanting still from the upcoming live-action adaptation, revealing Halle Bailey’s Ariel alongside her aquatic pals, Flounder (Jacob Tremblay) and Scuttle (Awkwafina). The delightful snapshot captures a moment straight from the 1989 animated classic, as the trio excitedly discuss their underwater discoveries.
A Star-Studded Rendition of an Animated Classic
In the director’s chair for this aquatic adventure is none other than Oscar-nominated filmmaker Rob Marshall, whose impressive resume includes 2018’s Mary Poppins Returns and 2014’s Into the Woods. With a script penned by David Magee, the movie follows Ariel, the mermaid princess of Atlantica (Halle Bailey) who becomes enamored with the human world after saving the life of Prince Eric (Jonah Hauer-King), to the annoyance of King Triton (Javier Bardem).
Adding a dash of wickedness to the cast is Emmy nominee Melissa McCarthy as the legendary Disney villain, Ursula. McCarthy has previously mentioned that her portrayal of the cunning sea witch draws inspiration from her love of drag queens and their artistry.
A Treasure Trove of Disney Live-Action Remakes
Following the roaring success of 2019’s live-action reimaginings of Aladdin and The Lion King, Disney continues to mine their extensive collection of animated classics. The live-action adaptation of Snow White is set to dazzle audiences in 2024, with Rachel Zegler and Gal Gadot in the starring roles. Meanwhile, Moana’s Dwayne Johnson is on board to produce a live-action version of the 2016 musical adventure.
Disney’s live-action train doesn’t stop there: Lilo & Stitch is also getting the treatment, with Courtney B. Vance stepping into the role of the no-nonsense CIA Agent-turned-social worker, Cobra Bubbles. Additionally, Guy Ritchie, the man behind Sherlock Holmes, has been tapped to direct a live-action Hercules film, which will be produced by Avengers: Endgame masterminds Anthony and Joe Russo.
Mark your calendars, as The Little Mermaid is set to make a splash on May 26, 2023.
“The Little Mermaid” is the beloved story of Ariel, a beautiful and spirited young mermaid with a thirst for adventure. The youngest of King Triton’s daughters and the most defiant, Ariel longs to find out more about the world beyond the sea and, while visiting the surface, falls for the dashing Prince Eric. While mermaids are forbidden to interact with humans, Ariel must follow her heart. She makes a deal with the evil sea witch, Ursula, which gives her a chance to experience life on land but ultimately places her life – and her father’s crown – in jeopardy. The film stars singer and actress Halle Bailey (“grown-ish”) as Ariel; Jonah Hauer-King (“A Dog’s Way Home”) as Prince Eric; Tony Award® winner Daveed Diggs (“Hamilton”) as the voice of Sebastian; Awkwafina (“Raya and the Last Dragon”) as the voice of Scuttle; Jacob Tremblay (“Luca”) as the voice of Flounder; Noma Dumezweni (“Mary Poppins Returns”) as Queen Selina; Art Malik (“Homeland”) as Sir Grimsby; with Oscar® winner Javier Bardem (“No Country for Old Men”) as King Triton; and two-time Academy Award® nominee Melissa McCarthy (“Can You Ever Forgive Me?” “Bridesmaids”) as Ursula.
“The Little Mermaid” is directed by Oscar® nominee Rob Marshall (“Chicago,” “Mary Poppins Returns”) with a screenplay by two-time Oscar nominee David Magee (“Life of Pi,” “Finding Neverland”). The songs feature music from multiple Academy Award® winner Alan Menken (“Beauty and the Beast,” “Aladdin”) and lyrics by Howard Ashman, and new lyrics by three-time Tony Award® winner Lin-Manuel Miranda. The film is produced by two-time Emmy® winner Marc Platt (“Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert,” “Grease Live!”), Miranda, two-time Emmy winner John DeLuca (“Tony Bennett: An American Classic”), and Rob Marshall, with Jeffrey Silver (“The Lion King”) serving as executive producer.