It can sometimes be easy to feel a little jaded about Disney’s live-action remakes. Not so with The Little Mermaid. Halle Bailey – who plays Ariel in the 2023 release – has brought the house down at Disneyland with a magical performance of the movie’s iconic "Part of Your World" song. It’s enough to get Disney fans, new and old, on board for one more trip under the sea.
Bailey, backed by Disneyland, performed the song live as part of American Idol’s Disney Night. If you had any doubts about the movie or Bailey’s casting, they will have all melted away by the time the first line hits. Watch the full clip – and get ready for goosebumps – above.
It’s perhaps no surprise, then, that those who have seen The Little Mermaid early are full of praise for Bailey. The response to the rest of the movie, however, is decidedly mixed. For more, check out our round-up of The Little Mermaid reactions.
"First time singing part of your world live since filming," Bailey wrote on Twitter. "Thank you @AmericanIdol for giving me the chance to do so on stage at Disneyland ..singing vocals in freezing cold weather at 3am while park is closed is no joke but we did it!"
The Little Mermaid might not be the only time we’re part of that world. Speaking to Total Film magazine, director Rob Marshall was open to the prospect of live-action sequels.
"I know there have been the prequels and sequels to the animated film – like, the straight-to-video kind of things, you know? It’s a classic story that has a lot of characters and a lot of interesting stories. I do think it’s right for certain things. But you have to see how a movie plays, and how it does… I think there’s always opportunity to find stories within stories. That’s always a wonderful thing," Marshall said.
The Little Mermaid, starring Halle Bailey, Jonah Hauer-King, Melissa McCarthy, and Javier Bardem, is out in cinemas on May 26. Discover what else the House of Mouse is up to with our guide to new Disney movies.