The Original Voice of “Ariel” Defends Halle Bailey As New “Little Mermaid”

The Original Voice of “Ariel” Defends Halle Bailey As New “Little Mermaid”

photo credit: Eugene Powers // Shutterstock

Last week, it was announced that Grown-ish actress Halle Bailey would portray Ariel in Disney’s new live-action “The Little Mermaid.”

Social media immediately divided over the topic of Ariel being black. Some felt that they wanted the same white Ariel they grew up knowing, even creating a #NotMyAriel, while others were open and excited about the change.

Jodi Benson, who originally voiced Ariel back in 1989, is defending Halle as Ariel.

“We need to be storytellers,” Jodi says. “And no matter what we look like on the outside, no matter our race, our nation, the color of our skin, our dialect, whether I’m tall or thin, whether I’m overweight or underweight, or my hair is whatever color, we really need to tell the story.”
“I think that the spirit of a character is what really matters,” Jodi says. “What you bring to the table in a character as far as their heart and their spirit is what really counts.”
Written by Clarke Jones

 

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