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Disney’s Little Mermaid Live Action

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Posted (edited)

EDIT: Wrong Halle, lol.

Not sure a R&B singer is the right move for The Little Mermaid.

Edited by Seto Kaiba

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Never heard of her before, but she's pretty that's for sure. Interested to see how she fits into the character.

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Can't wait for the up and coming Chinese starlett Disney will select to play Merida...just to appease the Chinese boxoffice!

As for The Little Mermaid......hoping they don't go all out Hip-hop/Rap...but something tells me they will

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Posted (edited)

I'm not disappointed in Disney for doing another cashgrab remake, just resigned.

 

I did a rapid imagesearch, and it is obvious why Halle Bailey got the role. Aside from having a singing career already, there's one other advantage. Skin tone aside, she actually LOOKS a lot like Ariel. At least, that was my first thought after I did an image search.

And let's be fair here. The first movie's Ariel was way too dark for someone who lives down in the water, away from the sun, under the sea. If they're not casting a legit albino, then whatever.

...

But the casting of Sebastian will make or break the film, in my opinion. He's the key role as far as I'm concerned.

 

 

 

 

2016+BET+Awards+Arrivals+vSw-xSz4DAGx.jpg

Edited by JB0

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I just can't picture her with proper Red hair.

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I'm positive Hans Christian Andersen, Danish author (1805-1875), had a Nubian princess in mind as the inspiration for the character of Ariel...

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The Disney film has been busy filling out the rest of its cast. For example, Jacob Tremblay and Awkwafina are being considered for the respective roles of Flounder and Scuttle, two of Ariel’s companions on her journey. Melissa McCarthy is in talks to play Ursula, the sea witch who turns Ariel human and, in the process, steals her voice.

 

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1 hour ago, mechaninac said:

I'm positive Hans Christian Andersen, Danish author (1805-1875), had a Nubian princess in mind as the inspiration for the character of Ariel...

:lol:

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3 hours ago, mechaninac said:

I'm positive Hans Christian Andersen, Danish author (1805-1875), had a Nubian princess in mind as the inspiration for the character of Ariel...

I'm positive that Disney took a huge dump all over Andersen's story the first time around and no one cared(Why is the witch the size of Godzilla? Did they just ram her like Jaws? What is this bullcrap "lived happily ever after" ending?) . Calling "author intent" now is a little late.

...

Especially if you're going to call the main character Ariel while making the case, which is a Disney-created name. Andersen named her simply "the youngest sister".

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22 minutes ago, JB0 said:

I'm positive that Disney took a huge dump all over Andersen's story the first time around and no one cared(Why is the witch the size of Godzilla? Did they just ram her like Jaws? What is this bullcrap "lived happily ever after" ending?) . Calling "author intent" now is a little late.

Well c'mon, Disney's peddling these movies to kids.  Watership Down was traumatic enough for the children in the audience, never mind what childhood traumas that could be inflicted by faithful adaptations of some of the stories Disney used for their animated feature films.  These old stories are NOT kid-friendly.

Hans Christian Andersen's The Little Mermaid has its protagonist subjected to constant torturous pain as part of her human guise and the story ends with the prince marrying someone else followed almost immediately by a NTR-induced attempted first degree murder, the protagonist's body horror death-by-magic, and a minimum sentence of 300 years community service for the crime of not having a soul (extended every time a child cries).

That'd still be one of the Lighter and Softer ones too... imagine a faithful version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame where the lead is a mentally ill, violent, deaf man who is sent to kidnap a gypsy girl, publicly flogged for it, and then commits suicide by starvation to be with her after she's executed by hanging on a trumped up attempted murder charge because the two guys who were into her are both complete bastards.  Or Mulan, where the Khan successfully invades China, summons Mulan to be his concubine, and she kills herself.  Or The Jungle Book, complete with the part of Mowgli's story where he learns the villagers are planning to execute his adopted family because they think he's a witch and uses his command of animals to murder the entire village.  Or Snow White, in which the evil queen is made to dance on hot coals until she dies of exhaustion.

Real kid stuff, y'know?

It's a bit different to randomly have, say, a black Danish prince in the 18th century... 

(Though feel bad for Belle and the prince from Beauty and the Beast, becuase they're young French nobles living less than fifty years from the French Revolution...)

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Like I said... it's a little late to be shouting about author's intent after praising Disney for taking a dump on said intent for ... basically the animation studio's entire existence.

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, mechaninac said:

I'm positive Hans Christian Andersen, Danish author (1805-1875), had a Nubian princess in mind as the inspiration for the character of Ariel...

It doesn't make a ton of sense biologically.  Not that mermaids make sense biologically anyway.

Melanin is natural insulation against UVB radiation which is why peoples from equatorial latitudes have more of it.  Mermaids live on the ocean floor.  In clear ocean water only 1% of light makes it down to 200 meters.  There's no reason for mermaids to have a high level of melanin because the water is already protecting them from UVB radiation.  Unless they live in shallow coastal waters less than 20m deep they should be like vampire levels of pale.  Ariel's family live in a freaking underwater castle so they're probably deeper than that.

As a black person I'm not sure I'm ok with this kind of casting decision.  Like I get wanting minorities to have more representation in Hollywood but randomly making characters other ethnicities for no reason except representation feels more like a step back towards blaxploitation but with a better budget.  At the time this story was written the Danish government was still kind of struggling with the idea that black people were people.  They didn't even completely abolish slavery until 11 years after the story was first published.  Don't even get me started on the problems that would cause if they decide to make the prince black too.

Edited by BlackRose

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Posted (edited)

Here's a real mermaid.

Florida-Rivers-Crystal-River-Carlton-War

Fictionalized mermaids (or mermen) are not real and so what their coloring is, is just as much a fiction as the mermaid herself.

As to the new movie, I did pause for a moment when seeing they'd hired a black (brown?) girl for the role, but that's because I've grown up with Ariel being white (pale?) with bright red hair. Now, is there some rule that says she has to stay white with bright red hair? No. Though, to be honestly, I would rather they had kept the look of the character the same, but that's just because it's what I'm familiar with. Kind of the same thing with the new MJ in Spiderman.

The original story itself was written 182 years ago, in a time when white people were predominant, but that is not the same anymore. We live in a diverse culture that is becoming steadily more so every year, and to consider that they (Disney) would seek to identify with that wider demographic is not a wild notion.  Money is the bottom line, and more butts in the seats is the goal.

And this is being made for far younger audiences than most of us, namely preteen to teenage girls. Would Disney like it if we (the older generation) liked it as well? Sure they would, but we are not the main target. In the end, all that really matters if it is a good story, well written and well acted. And if the kids like it.

Edited by Thom

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I'm sick of the disney remakes, and also sick of the pop culture purge of gingers. So what if gingers have no souls they shouldn't be erased :(

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7 minutes ago, Duymon said:

I'm sick of the disney remakes, and also sick of the pop culture purge of gingers. So what if gingers have no souls they shouldn't be erased :(

Maybe they'll give her red hair with CG in post.

 

But yeah, the constant string of Disney remakes are just depressing coming from a studio that once prided itself on workmanship and creativity.

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11 hours ago, Thom said:

The original story itself was written 182 years ago, in a time when white people were predominant, but that is not the same anymore.

Granted, but the story was also set over 182 years ago even in the bowdlerized adaptation Disney is remaking... I think that's the reason a lot of people are going to have issues with this casting decision.  As @BlackRose noted, to call attitudes towards people of color 182 years ago "less than enlightened" would be a monstrous understatement.

I'd be more concerned about Disney's execution, to be honest.  I haven't seen the remake of Aladdin yet, since for me nobody will be able to replace Robin Williams as the Genie, but from previous films Disney's handling of "ethnic" character roles has been fraught with issues. We've come a long way from 1967's The Jungle Book with its implicitly black swing-dancing orangutan who wants to be a person (and was originally meant to be played by Louis Armstrong), but even semi-recent efforts like 2009's The Princess and the Frog tried to get away with stuffing the cast with racist caricatures because they had a minority main character.

(Besides, we all know if Disney wants to make a fortune all they have to do is remake Treasure Planet and cast Zoe Saldana as Captain Ameila... the two highest grossing films to date have her painted funny colors, so why not try for a hat trick?)

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4 hours ago, Duymon said:

I'm sick of the disney remakes, and also sick of the pop culture purge of gingers. So what if gingers have no souls they shouldn't be erased :(

Day walkers man;)

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Just want to make sure that I understand the ruckus.

People are upset because a Black person was cast? I mean that's what it boils down to, don't try to sound so enlightened when your bias is showing.

As stated earlier, 

19 hours ago, jenius said:

It's okay to put under represented people into more roles, it is not okay to take roles away from under represented people.

I mean, as always just vote or speak with your wallet, don't see the movie but there's no need to make this into a crusade because "someone" that doesn't look like you, or what you think they should look like, "took a job".

And no, I'm not likely to see this because I don't have a reason too, no small children in my life. I also didn't see the live action Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin nor am I likely to see the Lion King. Not because of any principle or sense of indignation around casting, storytelling, Hollywood lack of originality or other issue, but because they just really aren't my cup of tea. 

If you guys were just dying to see Little Mermaid I might get it, but you're a bunch of grownups poo-pooing a kids movie that you probably weren't going to see anyway, even if the most red headed red head in history were cast.

-b.

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6 minutes ago, Kanedas Bike said:

Just want to make sure that I understand the ruckus.

People are upset because a Black person was cast? I mean that's what it boils down to, don't try to sound so enlightened when your bias is showing.

As stated earlier, 

I mean, as always just vote or speak with your wallet, don't see the movie but there's no need to make this into a crusade because "someone" that doesn't look like you, or what you think they should look like, "took a job".

And no, I'm not likely to see this because I don't have a reason too, no small children in my life. I also didn't see the live action Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin nor am I likely to see the Lion King. Not because of any principle or sense of indignation around casting, storytelling, Hollywood lack of originality or other issue, but because they just really aren't my cup of tea. 

If you guys were just dying to see Little Mermaid I might get it, but you're a bunch of grownups poo-pooing a kids movie that you probably weren't going to see anyway, even if the most red headed red head in history were cast.

-b.

I don't think the issue is simply because a black actress is being hired to play the part normally associated as a white character. At least, it shouldn't be...

The issue is that such casting is just BS used to fool minorities into thinking a company, like Disney, is actually listening and hiring more of them.....it would be much more beneficial for Disney (and others) to increase the hiring amounts of qualified "backline" staff that happen to be minority.....instead of just ONE minority actress "taking" the role, as you stated, that would have gone to a white actress....this will have a minimal effect on the continued economic growth and prosperity of minorites in this country.....seriously, how many minority actors/actresses are affected by lack of employment opportunities vs the general minority working population?.....Disney can keep filling in the handful of "live action" roles with the race/ethnicity that they were originally portrayed as in the origianl works and/or animated movies......they should instead make a real effort to hire more qualified minorities to staff their payrolls in a way that represents the racial make-up of the country they are generating multi-billion dollars of revenue in....

Getting all bent out of shape over a single casting is not focusing on the real issue....it is just the simplest one to focus on of a far more complicated issue...and this is why Disney has casted a black girl as Ariel.....it's good PR for today's race politics and PC paranoia.....but it is of very little actual benefit to the minorities they would like for everyone to believe they are helping with these silly casting choices

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I suggest going to the Disney parks and seeing how many minorities are appearing all over.  To say that Disney is not making an effort to be inclusive throughout their business is just plain wrong.

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I've always called Disney (mostly jokingly) "The Evil Empire."  Largely because they profit by manipulating children into manipulating their parents into spending money on Disney movies and goods.  When Disney made "The Princess and the Frog," I understood that they want to make more ethnic princesses.  I was really disappointed that they didn't use a "Princess story" from an African country; they just hacked up "The Frog Princess."  At least Mulan was a Chinese story even though she isn't a real princess.

Perhaps Disney should go in a new direction.  Dump the "Princess" and go for "Heroine."  Push strong female characters rather that female victims that get mistreated and sexually assaulted.

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33 minutes ago, Kanedas Bike said:

Just want to make sure that I understand the ruckus.

People are upset because a Black person was cast? I mean that's what it boils down to, don't try to sound so enlightened when your bias is showing.

I don't think that's the case for anyone here, but the internet being the internet there is almost certainly some toxic collection of twits in their native habitat of Twitter ranting and raving about that precise subject.

Mostly, I think it's just uncertainty in the midst of Remake Madness.  Like Aladdin and Beauty and the BeastThe Little Mermaid was one of the most celebrated installments in Disney's animated canon, so the announcement of a live action remake is naturally going to garner skepticism from almost every angle despite the reception the previous remakes receiving a generally favorable response from audiences.  You'd see similar reactions to, say, whomever was cast in a remake of My Fair Lady because whoever is cast, no matter how competent, will never be Audrey Hepburn... unless some serious strides are made in cloning in the next couple years.

There is, I suspect, an element of wary caution to it as well.  Over the last few years, fans have learned that when studios start promoting a film or series on the basis of the diversity of its cast it's the studio/network preparing to weaponize social media against the critics.  The critics are stuck with a Sophie's Choice of praising the film/series even if it's bad, or risk the inevitable accusations of [racism/sexism/LGBTQ+phobia, check all that apply] and the harassment that inevitably follows.  We've seen this with Star Trek: DiscoveryStar Wars: the Last Jedi, Doctor Who season 11, Captain Marvel, and so on (where critics sing their praises and general audiences react with "meh" or worse).
 

 

Quote

And no, I'm not likely to see this because I don't have a reason too, no small children in my life. I also didn't see the live action Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin nor am I likely to see the Lion King. Not because of any principle or sense of indignation around casting, storytelling, Hollywood lack of originality or other issue, but because they just really aren't my cup of tea. 

If you guys were just dying to see Little Mermaid I might get it, but you're a bunch of grownups poo-pooing a kids movie that you probably weren't going to see anyway, even if the most red headed red head in history were cast.

While @BlackRose and I will likely end up taking my niece to go see it, I would expect a lot of folks to go see if for its own sake.  Disney films have always had pretty strong all-ages appeal, the "animation is only for kids" thing is this weird cultural preconception that is constantly subverted but refuses to just crawl under a rock and die.  I'd probably still go see the film even if I weren't taking my niece, simply because Disney consistently sets the bar astonishingly high for music in its films.  Even when the films themselves aren't the best, the music is still flat amazing (e.g. The Hunchback of Notre Dame).

(It's not for nothing that The Lion King is in its 22nd consecutive year as a stage musical, with OVER NINE THOUSAAAAAAAAAAAND performances under its belt and a firm hold on the title of highest all-time box office earner, highest grossing broadway show, and third longest-running broadway show behind Chicago and The Phantom of the Opera.)

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...I dunno, there were about 5 or 6 posts prior to mine that all centered around race as the issue.

For the record, I don't feel pandered to by Disney, I think it's a good thing when little kids can see stars and people that look like them on the big screen. Regardless of ethnicity, so if traditionally underrepresented groups (including my own) gets time to shine, then it makes me happy. Children need role models, and if kids can more directly relate to those role models based on appearance AND strength of character (morality and right from wrong) then that's even better.

Everyone is of course is entitled to their thoughts and opinions, I just posted about my perception of said thoughts and opinions.

I'll just leave it at "hopefully the movie is well-made and enjoyable".

PS - a lot of "kids" movies have adult appeal, it's only my one personal choice because the movies I listed don't really appeal to me personally. Now I own The Incredibles and The Incredibles 2 because that's more my cup of tea. :)

Cheers y'all

-b.

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Race aside...

Given Ms. Bailey’s credentials, are they doing a full musical? 

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1 hour ago, azrael said:

Race aside...

Given Ms. Bailey’s credentials, are they doing a full musical? 

I certainly hope so. While the other movies were musicals because Disney cartoons are musicals, in Little Mermaid's case it was baked into the story and characters.

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1 hour ago, azrael said:

Race aside...

Given Ms. Bailey’s credentials, are they doing a full musical? 

Hiring a professional vocalist for the lead role would seem a strange choice otherwise, given that her filmography is almost exclusively "choir member" in various films.

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Ariel has only one song I remember... Well, and her La La La that she sings a couple times. Maybe they'll give her more like they have Jasmine a song.

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Re: Faithfulness of the adaptation -- From the get-go, Disney's fairy tale movies have been more "inspired by" than "adaptation of", so "take a dump on" is a misplaced characterization; also, IMHO, hyperbolic -- the Disney film doesn't parody the HCA 1837 story, or attempt to supplant it. It should be thought of as "Disney's The Little Mermaid" and not "Disney presents Hans Christian Andersen's The Little Mermaid". The world of ideas can accommodate more than one version of a story (*), although admittedly, Disney's market power gives it unprecedented mindshare.

Re: Ariel's skin tone -- As conventionally pictured, nothing about mer-person anatomy and physiology makes sense (why so much hair? where are the gills?) and skin pigmentation is the least of it. Assuming natural selection is even pertinent, maybe they haven't lived in a low-UV environment long enough to lose said pigment. Maybe it's random, like the coloration of a litter of tabby kittens, and Ariel's sisters will be various shades of brown (or blue, or striped, or ...).

For alternate takes, see The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (2005), Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005), or the Fisher Kingdom in Aquaman (2018).

Me, I'm wondering how they'll re-interpret the "seashell bra" trope. Consider that in the current live-action Aladdin, Princess Jasmine's wardrobe has rather more midriff coverage than in the 1992 animated film.

(*) The world can accommodate multiple versions, but it's possible a single brain can't. From their complaints, some people seem resistant to the whole notion of alternatives and nuance; if two ideas are even slightly similar, they get conflated. This might reflect a real neurological difference, or simply a lack of effort. The tendency has become particularly apparent in 20/21-cen pop culture where a mythos gets repeatedly reinterpreted within a single person's lifetime.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, jenius said:

Ariel has only one song I remember... Well, and her La La La that she sings a couple times. Maybe they'll give her more like they have Jasmine a song.

So I was sitting on the toilet reading Jenius' post and I hand an epiphany.  It occurred to me that Ariel is or was a collector like most (if not all) of us.  She sang joyfully of her collection.  Then her narrow-minded and non-understanding father destroyed her hard earned collection.  This caused her to run away in shock and depression and make some really bad decisions because she wasn't thinking straight.  So we should embrace this story!

And damn you Jenius and your Scorched Earth Toys reviews for sucking me into Macross toy collecting.

As far as Disney employment:  It is indeed complicated.  Disney operates properties all over the world.  They hire thousands of locals.  So I imagine this is about the so called "Disney Imagineers" and those above them.  I'm not going to research it to find out how diverse their demographic may or may not be.  Again, far too complicated.

Random thought:  If Ariel is indeed a fish, fishes come in all sorts of colors or lack there of.  Does any of this matter?Anglerfish-1.jpg.a5e8da0ad55760e2d9d659bcf5136892.jpg

Edited by DewPoint
Because I proofread like 10 minutes after the fact!

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I haven't seen a single live-action adaptation yet of any of the Disney movies. This will continue the trend.

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Any truth to the rumor that they're leaning towards Melissa McCarthy as Ursula?  Because I'd go see that if for no other reason than to see(hear?) her sing with Hailee's voice...  (assuming they keep the core elements of the story)  

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21 hours ago, BlackRose said:

It doesn't make a ton of sense biologically.  Not that mermaids make sense biologically anyway.

Melanin is natural insulation against UVB radiation which is why peoples from equatorial latitudes have more of it.  Mermaids live on the ocean floor.  In clear ocean water only 1% of light makes it down to 200 meters.  There's no reason for mermaids to have a high level of melanin because the water is already protecting them from UVB radiation.  Unless they live in shallow coastal waters less than 20m deep they should be like vampire levels of pale.  Ariel's family live in a freaking underwater castle so they're probably deeper than that.

As a black person I'm not sure I'm ok with this kind of casting decision.  Like I get wanting minorities to have more representation in Hollywood but randomly making characters other ethnicities for no reason except representation feels more like a step back towards blaxploitation but with a better budget.  At the time this story was written the Danish government was still kind of struggling with the idea that black people were people.  They didn't even completely abolish slavery until 11 years after the story was first published.  Don't even get me started on the problems that would cause if they decide to make the prince black too.

I am in no way attempting to mitigate your concerns.  Merely approaching this from a biological point of view:

People of the far north (Inuit, Eskimos, and so on) also have darker skins, because of their diet.  (Apparently it's a vitamin D rich diet from fatty fish that are naturally rich in vitamin D).

It's arguable that mermaids could have dark skin (just like the Inuit, et al), however, they'd need to be spending a lot of time near the surface of the water, where there's more UV.

 

Of course, if the mermaids live at the bottom of the ocean, then they should have "skin" like the Blind Congo River Spiny Eel: https://www.jungledragon.com/image/59447/the_blind_congo_river_spiny_eel_mastacembelus_brichardi_lives_in_the_turbid_waters_of_the_congo_river.html

(but I don't think anyone wants to see a movie where the heroine has skin like that! :lol: )

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Now I'm hoping this movie actually embraces music from the Carribean and takes it up a couple of notches.  Give us some new tunes.

Just as long as it isn't Pitbull's take on Toto, I'd be fine with it.

Also, didn't we already get a live action growns-up Arial in Aquaman? 

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