After Videos Of Young Black Girls Responding To Halle Bailey’s Little Mermaid Went Viral, A Pilot Sent The Star A Sweet Note

Next year Disney’s next live-action remake promises to be a big one with a new version of The Little Mermaid, the movie that launched the Disney Renaissance of animation. The film has already made headlines due to the casting of Halle Bailey in the role of Ariel, but while some have been critical of the choice, many others are showing their support to Bailey, who are thrilled to see her broaden representation on the big screen. 

Following the release of the teaser trailer for The Little Mermaid, that gave us our first real look of Bailey as Ariel, social media was flooded with videos of people of color watching the Mermaid trailer, full of joy at seeing themselves represented. And the praise keeps rolling in as Bailey shared an image on Instagram of a note she received from the pilot on a recent flight, who wanted the actress to know that what she was doing meant something to a lot of people.  

not to Halle Bailey from Delta airlines pilot

(Image credit: Halle Bailey Instagram)

Halle Bailey says this note really made her cry and it’s hard to imagine it not doing so. Being told that you’re an inspiration to a lot of kids has to be a complicated feeling. It’s wonderful to be able to be that role model, but also a lot to ask of one person. Bailey has seemingly been handling it all well, though certainly getting notes like this probably helps a great deal.

The racist backlash that came with Disney's decision to cast a Black woman as Ariel rather than go with the red-haired white person of the animated film was probably a lot for Halle Bailey to handle as well. Getting the positive response from those people for whom this means so much would have been powerful on its own, but it means that much more since it came along side all the negative response.

And it’s hard to argue that Halle Bailey wasn’t the right pick for the job. At the moment all we’ve seen is part of her singing “Part of Your World” but that much is done perfectly. If the rest of the live-action Little Mermaid follows suit, we’re going to be in for another live-action remake from Disney that will probably make $1 billion. 

As far as we know, The Little Mermaid is going to follow in the footsteps of other very successful remakes like The Lion King and Aladdin and remain pretty faithful to the plot of the source material. The one thing that might hint at more significant changes is that, while those other films have only added one new song, The Little Mermaid remake is expected to have several new songs, which could mean that we’re in for some changes, or at least a deeper dive into some elements or characters.   

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.