ABC has given us our first look at The Little Mermaid Live, and it has some fans more excited than Disney's upcoming live-action remake. To be clear here, these images are for an upcoming live show to be aired live on television and shouldn't be confused with the big screen live-action remake Disney plans to start shooting in 2020.
In a new "Meet the Cast" video released by ABC, we are given a good look at some of the project's leading cast members, which includes Auli'i Cravalho (Moana) as Ariel, Queen Latifah (Hairspray) as Ursula the Sea-Witch, Graham Phillips (Riverdale) as Prince Eric, John Stamos (Fuller House) as Chef Louie, and the reggae artist Shaggy ("It Wasn't Me") as Sebastian. You can watch it below.
Based on the animated Disney movie from 1989, The Little Mermaid Live! will tell a similar story. The plot follows a young mermaid princess named Ariel who dreams of becoming human after falling in love with a human prince named Eric. She strikes a deal with the dastardly sea-witch Ursula to transform her into a human for three days in exchange for her voice, but if she fails to receive "true love's kiss" from the prince, she'll be turned back into a mermaid and remain the property of Ursula forever.
The movie is also notable for its colorful characters in addition to Ariel and Ursula, including King Triton, Flounder, Sebastian, and Scuttle. After its release, the movie would become one of Disney's most memorable titles of all time.
Live-action remakes have become a bit of a trend for Disney over the past several years. Just this year, we've seen updated versions of both Aladdin and The Lion King hit the big screen, joining past live-action reboots of movies Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, and The Jungle Book. The House of Mouse will also be developing even more of these projects for the small screen as well, as a live-action version of Lady and the Tramp will premiere in November on the company's Disney+ streaming service. These live shows like the upcoming Little Mermaid program from ABC apparently serve as another way for Disney to get more mileage out of each of their biggest titles.
It's not entirely clear when the live-action movie version of The Little Mermaid will hit theaters, but it will reportedly start filming early next year. Some of its cast members have already been revealed as well, giving us an idea of what to expect from the upcoming release. Halle x Chloe singer Halle Bailey has been cast in the leading role of Ariel the titular mermaid. Melissa McCarthy, Jacob Tremblay, and Awkwafina have also been reportedly attached to the roles of Ursula, Flounder, and Scuttle as well. Javier Bardem is also rumored to be up for King Triton, while a variety of names like Harry Styles, Cameron Cuffe, and Jonah Hauer-King have come up as contenders for Prince Eric.
The Wonderful World of Disney: The Little Mermaid Live! is set to air on ABC on Nov. 5, 2019 at 8/7c. Because the live-action movie won't even begin shooting until 2020, this show should hopefully be enough to hold fans over. For fans of the original movie, it should definitely be worth checking out. The Little Mermaid Live! trailer comes to us from ABC on YouTube.