It seems unbelievable, but it must be repeated once more: representation matters. And this has been demonstrated once again with the teaser for the remake of ‘The Little Mermaid’, the new version of the beloved Disney Classic, which opens in theaters in 2023. This first preview arrived last Saturday, September 10, within the framework of D23 Expo, and quickly became the most talked about thing at the Disney fan convention. A conversation that continues days later, and that unfortunately and as usual with great projects that include diversity, female protagonists or people of color, has unleashed a lot of negativity and racist comments.
Fortunately, among all the noise and ugliness of social networks, Halle Bailey, the actress who gives life to the flesh and blood Ariel, has found a haven where she can enjoy what really matters: the reactions of the children’s public and the new generations, to which the remake is mainly directed. The 22-year-old interpreter has been deeply moved by the videos of little girls watching the trailer, which have been shared these days on social networks.
The video that has gone viral these days is the reaction of a black girl who watches the trailer excitedly and says her mouth open to her mother “Is that Ariel? Is that her? Is that really her?”. The clip, of an overflowing sweetness, has moved thousands of people (according to Peoplewas viewed more than 4 million times on Twitter and TikTok) including Bailey, who retweeted it adding: “Okay, I just sobbed watching this, thanks. It’s so sweet.”. How not to cry.
ki just sobbed watching this thanks ??she’s so sweet ??? https://t.co/jKKdHkOvDe
? Halle (@HalleBailey) September 11, 2022
Throughout this week, the actress has been liking and sharing messages of support after the trailer was released, and wanted to make it clear to fans that all the love is coming to her. A few days after D23, Bailey retweeted yet another video, this time a compilation of black girls’ reactions to the trailer, including the first viral video, with this message: “People have been sending me these reactions all weekend and I’m really touched. this means everything to me“.
people have been sending these reactions to me all weekend and i’m in truly in awe ??this means the world to me ?? https://t.co/cuKjKN8nxH
? Halle (@HalleBailey) September 12, 2022
There have been many other reaction videos, but one of the ones that has amused Twitter the most is that of another girl who, after seeing the teaser, tells her mother: “Is it me or was that Whitney Houston?”.
? Paris Athena | Founder of Black Tech Pipeline (@ParissAthena) September 13, 2022
The happiness of the girls before the new Ariel can be felt in each of the videos, and the actress has decided to keep that, while at the same time there is a much less pleasant debate on networks about the remake. It is something similar to what has also happened recently with ‘The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power’ due to the inclusion of racialized characters in Middle-earth. The Amazon series has faced such horrible criticism and attacks that even the original hobbits have spoken out in support of the series’ diverse casting. after that, Ismael Cruz Córdova, who plays the elf Arondir, wanted to send a message of support (in Spanish) to Baileyafter deciding, like her, to ignore the trolls: “Dear Halle Bailey, congratulations. The rest? Have a great time in your caves?”.
? Ismael Cruz Cordova (@IsmaelC_C) September 13, 2022
One of the most watched trailers of a live-action Disney
As revealed Variety exclusively, the first trailer for ‘The Little Mermaid’ obtained 104 million views globally in its first two days, adding visits from YouTube, Twitter, Snapchat, TikTok and Instagram, with the exception of the United Kingdom, Ireland and Australia, whose Figures have not been included due to the death of Queen Elizabeth II last Thursday, September 8.
The teaser for ‘The Little Mermaid’ has surpassed other recent Disney live-actions such as ‘Cruella’ (68 million), ‘Aladdin’ (74 million) ‘Beauty and the Beast’ (94 million) or ‘Maleficent: Mistress of the Bad’ (62 million). Of course, it falls far short of the first trailer for ‘The Lion King’, which broke all records with 224.6 million online views in the first 24 hours of its publication.