Dapper Duos Celebs Guide Beautiful Black Trailblazers in Little Mermaid

Beautiful Black Trailblazers in Little Mermaid

The star of “The Little Mermaid” paid to the black actresses he saw represent the Disney princesses in his childhood

Halle Bailey thanked the black women at Disney who came before her, after her star turn on The Little Mermaid.

Having warmed the hearts of Disney fans for her portrayal of Ariel, Bailey paid to the “awesome” black actresses she grew up watching as Disney princesses, who inspired her to take on the iconic role.

Defending Brandy and Anika Noni Rose for their roles, Bailey, 23, told ET: “I loved Brandy as Cinderella; she was so awesome, a role model and an inspiration and a great study point for me while taking Ariel.

“I just saw how awesome she was in this role and how comfortable she was in her own skin and how much of an impact she had on the audience and the little girls like me who saw her. And Anika Noni Rose, who is simply exceptional.

“I was lucky enough to meet her and we got to sing the [Princess and the Frog] song together, “Almost There” for the [2022 Disney Family Singalong] with my sister [Chloe Bailey]. She was always so nice!”

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Speaking about the positive mark left by these actresses before her, Bailey added: “There are these beautiful black trailblazers who have done this before and who have been there so I can say, ‘OK, I can do it.'”

Bailey described the “beautiful” and “overwhelming” moments she experienced watching young black women’s reactions to her now as the new Disney princess, in videos shared on social media.

“It’s been such a beautiful moment for me to be able to see the babies’ reactions … it honestly overwhelms me emotionally and I cry as soon as I look at them,” the Little Mermaid star shared.

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Bailey said, “”Heal that girl in me” to see the impact playing her recent role has had on the black community and the younger generation watching.

“I think about the little girl that’s still inside of me, honestly, and it heals that little girl inside of me to see them feel like they have representation and someone to turn to, to know that they deserve to be in these places too,” Bailey said.

“[It’s] very important. It makes me cry every time I watch one of these videos.”

Bailey has a lot to celebrate, following the release of The Little Mermaid, after the film crashed the box office in its opening weekend.

After its theatrical release Friday, the reimagined 1989 Disney animated classic grossed million from 4,320 screens in North America, according to the Associated Press, which cited studio estimates Sunday.

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