– Halle Bailey, who plays Ariel in Disney’s upcoming “The Little Mermaid” movie, met Anika Noni Rose, who played Tiana in “The Princess and the Frog,” during her recent trip to Disney World.
– In an interview with Variety, Bailey expressed her desire to represent young girls and make them feel special while watching her play Ariel.
– Bailey hopes to continue the progress that Tiana started for representation of Black princesses and inspire the next generation of girls with an Ariel all their own.
Disney World witnessed an instantly iconic moment when “The Little Mermaid” star Halle Bailey met the actor who played Tiana from “The Princess and the Frog” during her recent trip to the park. Bailey took to her Instagram Stories on March 23 to share several videos and photos from her visit, including a picture with Tiana where both the actors could be seen grinning. Bailey posted a caption saying, “I found Princess Tiana, y’all!”
The meeting between the two Disney princesses carries significance because they are Disney’s only Black princesses to date, making their interaction an important moment for the public eye. In a 2022 interview with Variety, Bailey spoke about how she wants young girls to see themselves represented on the big screen after taking on the role of Ariel in “The Little Mermaid,” which will premiere on May 26. Bailey acknowledged the importance of representation and stated that she wants young girls to know that they are special and should be a princess in every single way.
Bailey’s reflection on the significance of representation is important for people of color who are often underrepresented in mainstream media. Bailey mentioned in the same interview with Variety that it would have been inspiring for her as a child to see an Ariel who looked like her. Bailey believes that small things like representation in media can create a significant impact on one’s confidence and belief in oneself.
Bailey and Tiana’s meeting was a beautiful moment, reminding future generations that representation matters. With Bailey continuing the progress that Tiana started, we might see more diverse Disney princesses represented in the future. Bailey’s remarks about representation are an important reminder to the film industry that inclusion is essential for everyone to see themselves represented on the big screen.