Pretty soon, Ariel will be part of our world, thanks to Halle Bailey. To celebrate the wrap-up of filming The Little Mermaid live-action, the 21-year-old posted a sunset, beach photo of herself as the Disney princess in the water.
“And just like that..that’s a wrap ❤️after auditioning for this film when I was 18 just about to turn 19, to now finishing filming through a pandemic when I turned 21 ..we have finally made it,” Bailey posted in a lengthy, caption on her Instagram Monday.
A sweet tribute
She went on to express her gratefulness for the experience and also highlighted how it was her toughest one as well.
“I feel so grateful to have experienced this film in all of its glory..it has been the toughest experience being away from everything and everyone I’ve ever known, to feeling self-doubt/ loneliness, but also feeling such freedom and perseverance as I’ve reached the end,” she wrote.
The grown-ish star went on to thank her co-stars including Melissa McCarthy who plays the evil sea witch, Ursula; Jacob Tremblay, who plays Flounder and Jonah Hauer-King who plays Prince Eric. King also gave Bailey her kudos in his wrap-up IG post and called her the “absolute magic” in the film.
Bailey continued, “This experience has made me so much stronger than I ever thought I could be. I’m so grateful to have such lovely and talented people in the cast like @jonahhauerking that will be my friend for infinite lifetimes, @jacobtremblay who I’m so proud of 🥺 and legends like @bardemantarctic @melissamccarthy @awkwafina @daveeddiggs who are masters of their craft but are so welcoming and open to little old me..as well as to the rest of the beautiful cast and crew.”
The “Do It” singer wrapped up the post by encouraging everyone to watch this reboot. “I cannot wait for time to speed up so you all can watch this film because it was made with so much love (plus blood sweat and tears)…”
‘Spirit, heart, youth, innocence, and substance’
Bailey is one-half of the R&B sister group, Chloe X Halle. When the news dropped that a Black girl with dreads was going to portray red-haired, fair-skinned Ariel in 2019, she was faced with some criticism, mostly racist ones. But her support and love circle is turning out to be bigger than the hate.
“Ariel was always my favorite and as a kid, I never could have imagined an Ariel that was black like me. At my big age I can’t wait to see this,” one fan tweeted.
Jodi Benson originally voiced the character in the 1989 original animated movie.
“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,” director Rob Marshall said in a 2019 Disney release at the time of the announcement.
The release date for The Little Mermaid live-action is not out yet. In the meantime, we’ll watch the original and get our vocals ready so we can sing those high notes with our Black Ariel!