Part of the Disney formula lately is to turn their animated classics into live-action films. And for the most part, they have been commercial hits. This year alone, we’ve seen Dumbo and Aladdin reach the number one spot at the box office. Let’s not forget that they also have The Lion King and Maleficent 2 coming out in theaters later this year. So if it works, why not continue on releasing these live-action takes.
One of the future remakes will be The Little Mermaid, which is more or less an obvious choice considering how it is a favorite amongst Disney fans. And now we are getting to see who might star in it. According to various reports, Melissa McCarthy (Bridesmaids, Can You Ever Forgive Me), Jacob Tremblay (Room, The Predator), and Awkwafina (Crazy Rich Asians, The Farewell) are all in various stages of negotiations to star in the film about a rebellious teenage mermaid who dreams of being amongst the surface dwellers. Check out the full report below.
First up is McCarthy. According to Variety, she is in talks to play Ursula, the wicked sea witch who takes advantage of Ariel’s naivety and grants her wish to walk amongst humans. But of course, there is a price to be paid as she has to give up her voice and make the spell permanent by kissing the prince. Those who watched the original Disney version know how it will end up, and those who know the real version of the story know how everything actually ends up.
THR says Tremblay will provide the voice of Flounder, Ariel’s tropical fishy best friend, while Awkwafina will lend her voice to Scuttle, Ariel’s seagull pal and source of information to everything that is on the surface.
Tremblay is best known for his acting debut in Room, where he appeared alongside Brie Larson, who won the Oscar for Best Actress. He has since appeared in other films like The Book of Henry, Wonder, and The Predator. His upcoming roles include Good Boys and Doctor Sleep, a sequel to The Shining.
Awkwafina provided some scene-stealing performances in both Ocean’s 8 and Crazy Rich Asians. Her upcoming roles include The Farewell, Jumanji: The Next Level, and The Angry Birds Movie 2.
In 2016, Disney announced that Lin-Manuel Miranda and Alan Menken would be collaborating on new and original songs for the live-action adaptation of The Little Mermaid. A year later, Rob Marshall would enter talks to direct the film. According to Variety, Marshall will be using a script that was written by his Mary Poppins Returns scribe David Magee.
The Little Mermaid is not only an animated classic beloved by many, but it was also the film that helped usher in the Disney Renaissance. As such, there is a high expectation for the new take to be really good. Of course, it doesn’t really matter if the critics like it or not. Most would say that these remakes are nothing more than a quick cash grab for the studio, while others might enjoy it. We will just have to wait and see what the response is to this when it does come out.
[Source: Variety | THR]