As The Little Mermaid Shifts Filming, Looks Like Halle Bailey's Committing To Ariel's Red Hair

Nearly two years after grown-ish actress Halle Bailey (not to be confused with Halle Berry) was cast as the new, live-action Ariel, The Little Mermaid has finally shifted its filming to Italy for some major scenes. While Bailey has recently shared some looks at her “work” day and more without giving anything away about her character's look, it now looks like the actress will be committing to Ariel's red hair.

A recent post from Halle Bailey on her Instagram Story confirms the actress has been hard at work on the new project. In fact, she shared a post about winding down after a day of work (presumably on The Little Mermaid) and trying to get her hair back in order. She captioned the photo "another long day at work, which means hair will take centuries to dry."

Halle Berry Little Mermaid work

People have been on the lookout for Halle Bailey getting into Ariel mode for a while, particularly following the news in April that the beach-y portion of production would be occurring on the Italian island of Sardinia sometime this summer. (Formerly, the movie had shot some in Pinewood Studios in London after rehearsals for the musical kicked off way earlier this year.) In fact, the one time she sorta, kinda showed her hair it didn’t deter someone from commenting, “Y’all see those red locs.” So, people have definitely been on the lookout for the debut of Halle Bailey’s live-action Ariel look in recent months.

Having said this, the paparazzi has been doing its thing and there are photos of Halle Bailey confirmed on set if you search hard enough. Those first looks seem to indicate she will be rocking red hair in the movie, though the color is subtler than the animated version of The Little Mermaid's vibrant locks. At some point I'm sure we'll get more official and up-close-and-personal looks at characters like Ariel, Ursula, King Triton and more in the live-action version, but for now we'll just have to wait and see what the cast and more post during production.

Speaking of, the new movie has been coming together for a few months, as producer Lin-Manuel Miranda mentioned that rehearsals had started back in February and Melissa McCarthy also confirmed that bit of news. The Little Mermaid has a stacked cast and will star Halle Bailey, Jonah Hauer-King, McCarthy, Javier Bardem and plenty more. It will also feature voice work from Daveed Diggs (as Sebastian), Jacob Tremblay and Awkwafina. Now that filming has kicked off, I think it's time for the really hard-hitting questions, such as: Will the live-action Little Mermaid be able to pull off a seashell bikini? Only time and an official trailer for the upcoming movie will tell.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Jessica Rawden is Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. She’s been kicking out news stories since 2007 and joined the full-time staff in 2014. She oversees news content, hiring and training for the site, and her areas of expertise include theme parks, rom-coms, Hallmark (particularly Christmas movie season), reality TV, celebrity interviews and primetime. She loves a good animated movie. Jessica has a Masters in Library Science degree from Indiana University, and used to be found behind a reference desk most definitely not shushing people. She now uses those skills in researching and tracking down information in very different ways.