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Over the past few weeks, Disney’s The Little Mermaid has started to come together with some major casting news surfacing left and right. Chloe x Halle’s Halle Bailey will be offering up her voice to Ursula as the live-action musical’s Ariel. Former One Direction member Harry Styles is reportedly in early talks to star alongside her as Prince Eric... that is unless Shazam’s Asher Angel sold director Rob Marshall instead.
While the 16-year-old actor was on hand for interviews at San Diego Comic Con promoting the home release of Billy Batson’s superhero origin story, he said this of his involvement in the Disney remake:
I've auditioned. I went in for it. It means so much to me. I started off doing musical theater. One of my first ever shows, I was Flounder. It was really cute. There's video everywhere, if you guys want to look it up.
While news Harry Styles being in the early stages for the role of Prince Eric was reported earlier this week, maybe Asher Angel is still in the running? The actor is also a talented singer and former Disney Channel star on the television show Andi Mack. He also mentioned his truly adorable past stage role of Flounder to ET… which we of course looked up! Check it:
He showcases a beautiful singing voice, some dance skills and likability among mermaids! All are good qualities in a Prince Eric. However, it looks like his competition is rough. Harry Styles is one of the most popular names in the world, as his former band One Direction became a viral sensation from 2010 to 2016. After departing from the band, Styles has since released a solo album and starred in Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk in 2017.
Asher Angel does resemble Eric’s cartoon look a bit more than Harry Styles does. However, Angel is also over two years younger than Halle Bailey, who is currently 19. Styles is 25 years old. Casting Angel would allow the movie to have an Eric with more anonymity, as most who look at Styles will find it tough to shake his pop star status.
Asher Angel continued to gush about the potential role with these words:
I would love to do the live action, of course. There's so many amazing people in it that I would love to work with… [Halle Bailey] is gonna kill it. Hopefully we get to work together.
Disney’s upcoming Little Mermaid will be helmed by Mary Poppins Returns director Rob Marshall and written by Kingsman’s Jane Goldman and Life of Pi’s David Magee. The film will include the iconic tunes from Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, along with new music by Menken with lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda. No release date has been set, but official announcements are expected to come soon.