R&B singer Halle Bailey will play Ariel in Disney’s live-action remake of the animated classic The Little Mermaid, Variety reports. “After an extensive search, 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 statement. Bailey, one half of music duo Chloe x Halle, which opened for Beyoncé during her Lemonade tour, will be joining a cast that includes actors Awkwafina and Jacob Tremblay. Melissa McCarthy is also reportedly in talks to play the film’s iconic villain Ursula. According to the website, the new film will include songs from the 1989 original animated film along with new ones. In light of the news, Bailey tweeted a picture of Ariel with a darker skin tone and black hair. “Dream come true,” she wrote.
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