Halle Bailey has responded to racist backlash for her role as Ariel in the upcoming film little mermaid live adaptation.
The film’s trailer sparked a series of heartwarming viral videos earlier this month, with young children reacting to seeing Halle as the first black actress to play Ariel. However, the project has also received racist responses, with Halle now disputing the “commentary” surrounding the film.
In a video posted on her YouTube channel, Halle began by telling viewers, “I put so much time, blood, sweat, and tears into this work for this movie and I learned so much about myself in the process.”
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She went on to say that she was “much more shy” at the start of filming, explaining, “I felt like I grew with the character of Ariel in a way… I think that was the biggest thing for me, just to believe in myself and know that I’m worthy.”
Halle went on to address the backlash surrounding the film, saying, “And even today with all the comments and opinions from people, it just reminds me that I have to be number one — grounded and grateful that I have this opportunity.”
She continued: “And the fact that it’s causing a discussion for all of us… I mean, I know what it would have meant to me as a kid to have been able to see a Black Ariel.
“When I was younger, if I had seen this, it would have changed my whole outlook on life, so to get to do that is really cool and amazing for me and the little girl inside of me. She’s screaming and scary”.
Halle previously spoke about the conversations she had with her grandparents about taking on the role of Ariel. she said variety“It was an inspiring and beautiful thing to hear her words of encouragement, telling me, ‘You don’t understand what this is doing for us, for our community, for all the black and brown girls who are going to see each other. same on you.'”
The Little Mermaid hits theaters in May 2023.
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