Holly Bailey is making history as the first black actress to be cast as Ariel in Disney’s live-action adaptation of The Little Mermaid. The news has been met with both excitement and backlash from people all over the world. In a new cover story for The Face, Bailey opened up about the negative reactions she received and the importance of representation for black and brown children.
Halle Bailey Opens Up About Racist Backlash
Bailey credits her mentor Beyonce for offering sound advice to her and her sister Chloe Bailey when they first signed to Parkwood. She also shared that she was grateful to have been at the D23 Expo when the teaser was released, as she was spared from seeing any of the negativity.
The teaser showed children, many of who were young black girls, responding to the footage for the first time. Bailey said that seeing their reactions made her feel more grateful for where she is. She also shared that it was important for her to represent those young boys and girls, as it would have changed her perspective on life if she had seen someone like her when she was younger.
Bailey was flooded with texts from friends and family who were sending her reaction videos on social media after the teaser debuted. She said that it was an emotional experience for her, and that she was crying for two days just staring at them in disbelief.
The news of Bailey’s casting has been a huge milestone for representation in Hollywood, and she is an inspiration to many. She has shown that it’s possible for black and brown children to see themselves in leading roles, and that it can have a huge impact on their lives. For more details on this story, head to THR.com and for the latest entertainment news and updates, keep watching The Hollywood Reporter News.