ATLANTA — Disney fans got their first look at “The Little Mermaid” live-action film, starring Halle Bailey as Ariel, after a teaser trailer shown at D23 Expo over the weekend.
The movie doesn’t arrive in theaters until May 2023, but parents have taken videos of their children’s reactions to the trailer and shared them on social media.
According to Deadline, Bailey, the star of the live-action film, has even responded to the outpouring after fans started tagging her on videos.
“People have been sending these reactions to me all weekend and I’m in truly in awe ... this means the world to me.”
A TikTok video posted by the Fleming family in Atlanta also got the attention of Bailey, who grew up in the city with her sister Chlöe.
The post has been liked over 372,700 times and shared more than 5,700 times.
It’s the excitement from his girls that one Atlanta father, William Fleming, says fills his heart. Fleming’s wife filmed their two daughters, 4-year-old McKenzie and 2-year-old Riley, as they watched in amazement.
“I’m a sucker for them reacting to anything, it can be the littlest of things,” he told WSB-TV. “But to see them react to this and see other young Black girls around the country react the same way, it definitely touched us.”
Fleming told WSB that he knows that Disney princesses have not looked like his daughters. He appreciates Disney providing a real-life example that his daughters can accomplish anything they dream about.
“I have a huge heart and just appreciate Disney so much for taking a chance to say, ‘Hey, diversity matters, and we’re going to show it,’” Fleming said.
The film’s director, Rob Marshall, says it was important to honor the original while also bringing some depth to the new movie.
The movie will also feature four brand-new songs from original composer Alan Menken, with help from Lin-Manuel Miranda.
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