Who Is Halle Bailey, the Star Of Disney’s ‘The Little Mermaid’ Live-Action Remake?

Big news on the Disney remake front. The Little Mermaid is the latest of the classic animated films to get the live-action treatment, though there’s no projected release date just yet. (We can’t imagine it would be earlier than 2021.) But we do have a star — actress and singer Halle Bailey has been cast as Ariel. Here’s what you should know about her. 

Bailey is a singer along with her sister, Chloe

Chloe x Halle is the name of Bailey’s R&B group with her older sister, Chloe. And if you recognize them, it may because they’ve opened for none other than Beyonce. They were discovered by the pop icon from their YouTube covers of her greatest hits, and the rest is history: They were her opening act on The Formation World Tour, as well as her and Jay-Z’s On the Run II Tour in 2018.

The sister duo has also written plenty of their own music. Their first full-length studio album, The Kids Are Alright, came out last year. Chloe x Halle has tracks on various film soundtracks, including those of A Wrinkle in Time and Little

They both star on the Freeform series Grown-ish

Actress Halle Bailey
Actress Halle Bailey | Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic

The Bailey sisters have been acting since they were very young, though Chloe has had more film roles than Halle. The latter appeared in an episode of House of Payne in 2007, but other than that, she doesn’t have much on-camera experience.

That is, until more recently. Both sisters star on the Freeform series Grown-ish, a spin-off of ABC’s Black-ish. Though they are not the same age (Halle is 19, while Chloe just turned 21), they portray twins Skylar and Jazlyn, classmates of Yara Shahidi’s Zoey Johnson at the fictional college Cal U. 

Here’s who was previously rumored to have the role

There has been a lot of speculation around the casting of Ariel. Lea Michele, who played the character in the Hollywood Bowl’s live production to celebrate the animated film’s 30th anniversary in May 2019, was a name many mentioned. Famous redhead Lindsay Lohan tried to throw her hat in the ring. As for more serious choices, Zendaya was a frontrunner for many.

In a press release, director Rob Marshall said the following of the casting decision. “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.”

Who else has been cast in The Little Mermaid?

So far, none of the casting announcements have been official, although expect that to change very soon. Right now, we know that Crazy Rich Asians actress Awkwafina is being considered for the voice role of Scuttle the seagull, while Room star Jacob Tremblay could voice Flounder the fish.

Additionally, Melissa McCarthy is in talks to play Ursula the sea witch. However, musician Lizzo, who many feel is perfect for the part, has expressed her interest. We’ll have to wait and see when the official press releases come out.

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