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Rob Marshall on The Little Mermaid actress: We were looking for the best

The casting of Halle Bailey as Ariel in the live-action version of The Little Mermaid has sparked intense debate on social media and accusations of forced inclusion.

Director Rob Marshall strongly rejected the idea that it was due to a political agenda that the production decided to cast an African- American actress to play the character.

“ We were just looking for the best actress for the role, full stop. We saw all (possible actresses) and all ethnicities,” the filmmaker told Entertainment Weekly.

The goal, he added, was to find someone who could be “incredibly strong, passionate, beautiful, smart, cunning, with a tremendous amount of fire and joy.”

In addition to Bailey , the Latina Rachel Zegler has also been the target of attacks because she will be the protagonist of the live action adaptation of Snow White, which will arrive in 2024.

Originally from Atlanta and currently 22 years old, Halle Bailey benefited from being part of the film due to her musical ability.

The interpreter is the composer and voice of the duet Chloe x Halle , sponsored by Beyoncé, and which has three Grammy nominations.

“His voice is his trademark, it is ethereal and beautiful and must capture the heart of Prince Eric ( Ariel ‘s love , played by Jonah Hauer-King ),” he explained.

The Little Mermaid, in whose cast Javier Bardem (King Triton) and Melissa McCarthy also participate, will be released in theaters in 2023.

Rob Marshall ( Chicago ) considered the fairy tale to be a narrative that fits well with the parameters of modern women, who don’t see life as others want them to see it.

“It’s really an epic story about finding your true self,” he considered.

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