It’s time to go under the sea with an all-new Ariel.
Disney’s live-action remake of The Little Mermaid has officially found its star in Halle Bailey. The Grammy-nominated Chloe x Halle singer has landed the iconic starring role in the upcoming movie directed by Rob Marshall and produced by Marshall, John DeLuca, Marc Platt, and Lin-Manuel Miranda.
“After an extensive search, it was abundantly clear that Halle possesses that rare combination of spirit, heart, youth, innocence, and substance — plus a glorious singing voice — all intrinsic qualities necessary to play this iconic role,” Marshall said in a statement.
So who is this young woman poised to become an instant legend alongside Jodi Benson, the original Ariel, while also sealing her own historic legacy as the first woman of color to play the Disney Princess? The 19-year-old singer and actress currently stars on Freeform’s grown-ish as Sky Forster, but is best known for performing with her older sister Chloe in their R&B duo Chloe x Halle. The sisters shot onto the music scene after their YouTube cover of Beyoncé’s “Pretty Hurts” went viral back in 2013, earning them both a record deal as well as the attention of Beyoncé herself in the process.
Check out the now-famous cover that helped propel them to instant stardom below:
Halle and Chloe also recorded and posted YouTube covers of other pop stars like Rihanna:
And Alicia Keys:
After they signed with Beyoncé’s Parkwood Entertainment label, Chloe x Halle’s debut EP Sugar Symphony was released in 2016. It featured singles “Fall” and “Drop.” Check out the music video for “Fall” below:
And watch the music video for “Drop” below:
The sisters then appeared in Beyoncé’s Lemonade visual album and were the singer’s opening act on her Formation World Tour‘s European stops.
In 2017, Chloe x Halle released the critically loved The Two of Us album, which you can listen to in full below:
The sisters then wrote and recorded grown-ish‘s theme song and joined the cast first as recurring guest stars before getting promoted to series regulars.
Their next album, The Kids Are Alright, was totally written and executive produced by the pair.
The album also features the song “Warrior” from the A Wrinkle In Time soundtrack:
Chloe x Halle returned as the opening act for Beyoncé once more for her and Jay-Z’s On the Run II tour. Check out clips from their performances below:
The sisters also took to the field at Super Bowl LIII to sing “America the Beautiful.”
Halle also has many award show performances under her belt, like at the 2019 Grammys:
And the 2018 MTV Movie & TV Awards:
The upcoming reimagining of 1989’s animated The Little Mermaid, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary later this year, will feature the same beloved songs from the animated classic by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, as well as new songs with music by Menken and lyrics from Miranda. Additional casting announcements are expected in the coming weeks, but (so far unconfirmed) rumors are already swirling that Melissa McCarthy will play sea witch Ursula, Jacob Tremblay will play Flounder, and Awkwafina will play Scuttle.
Production is anticipated to begin in early 2020.