'Little Mermaid' Co-Star 'Thrilled' Children 'Of All Ethnicities' Will See Halle Bailey Play Ariel


Actor Daveed Diggs praised Halle Bailey for her role in “The Little Mermaid.”

Diggs, 41, spoke exclusively with People about the positive representation of Bailey’s casting for every child.

“I think it’s incredible. Obviously, it’s important for Black and Brown kids and for kids of all ethnicities to get to look up on the screen and feel like the story is theirs, too. I’m so thrilled about that,” he said.

Diggs, who played Sebastian in the remake, continued to express his support of Bailey.

“I’m also thrilled that it is Halle, of anybody. She’s wonderful. This is the only person who should be playing this role,” he added.

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In May, Bailey, 23, echoed the same sentiments, telling Ebony about the importance of children seeing diversity promoted in the Disney classic.

“Oh yeah, absolutely. But what I love about today [is that it’s normalized]. Somebody told me the other day, “[This generation of kids are] not even going to know the first version [of ‘The Little Mermaid’],” she shared with Ebony.

Bailey added, “Their version of Ariel is you.”

Jodi Benson, who was the voice of Ariel in the 1989 animated movie, also gave her seal of approval for Bailey’s performance.

“Halle, you were absolutely amazing! I’m SO proud of you and your beautiful performance as Ariel!” she wrote in her Instagram story, per Entertainment Weekly.

In an interview with The Face, Bailey gave insight into what viewers can expect from the live-action film.

“What’s beautiful about this version of ‘The Little Mermaid’ is that it’s a lot more modern,” Bailey explained. “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.”

Continuing, she said, “So [now] it’s more about Ariel finding freedom for herself because of this world that she’s obsessed with.”

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