It was recently announced that Halle Bailey was cast as Ariel in Disney’s upcoming live-action The Little Mermaid.
Tons of celebs offered their congratulations on social media and many fans expressed their delight at having a woman of color take on such an iconic role.
However, shortly after the news broke, #notmyariel began trending on Twitter as many criticized the casting of a black actor.
Though neither Disney nor Halle have commented on the backlash, Freeform — a Disney network — wrote "an open letter to the Poor, Unfortunate Souls" who criticized the casting.
It said, "Yes. The original author of The Little Mermaid was Danish. Ariel...is a mermaid. She lives in an underwater kingdom in international waters and can legit swim wherever she wants (even though that often upsets King Triton, absolute zaddy)."
"But for the sake of argument, let's say that Ariel, too, is Danish. Danish mermaids can be black because Danish *people* can be black."
"Ariel can sneak up to the surface at any time with her pals Scuttle and the *ahem* Jamaican crab, Sebastian, (sorry, Flounder!) and keep that bronze base tight. Black Danish people, and this mer-folk, can also *genetically* (!!!) have red hair."
"But spoiler alert — bring it back to the top — the character of Ariel is a work of fiction. So after all this is said and done, and you still cannot get past the idea that choosing the incredible, sensational, highly-talented, gorgeous Halle Bailey is anything other than the INSPIRED casting that it is because she 'doesn't look like the cartoon one,' oh boy, do I have some news for you...about you."
Not supporting diversity? In 2019?! Not today!
Want to see more diverse Disney characters? Check out the content below!