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On Feb. 15, Disney released its final trailer for the live-action “The Little Mermaid.”

Halle Bailey, the film’s star, went through yet another round of racism from online trolls who adamantly argue Ariel, The Little Mermaid, was and will always be White.

“As a Black person, you just expect it and it’s not really a shock anymore,” Bailey told The Face in a new cover story interview.

Though she plays a fictitious character in a fantasy world, the immediate hate and vitriolic attacks aimed at her on-and-off-screen character were very real.

Yet, the unfortunate reality is this past week’s demonizing, sexist, and racist comments toward Bailey are a blip in a much longer timeline of intolerance.

Both her casting announcement in 2019 and the film’s first trailer last year sent viewers into uproar online, and it will surely continue leading up to the film’s upcoming summer release.

Though social media users have given the origin of the underwater tale, the readily available and discoverable truths has done little, if anything, to stem the tide of faux outrage.

“I know people are like: ?’It’s not about race.’ But now that I’m her…People don’t understand that when you’re Black there’s this whole other community,” she added. “It’s so important for us to see ourselves.”

NBC News reports when racist viewers stormed the internet after the film’s trailer dropped last year, Bailey instead shared supercuts and montages of young Black girls getting emotional while watching the first footage of her as Ariel.

“It was an inspiring and beautiful thing to hear their words of encouragement, telling me, ‘You don’t understand what this is doing for us, for our community, for all the little Black and brown girls who are going to see themselves in you,’” Bailey said.

Halle Bailey says Queen B taught her to stay above the fray

“When [Chlöe and I] first signed to Parkwood, [Beyoncé] was always like: ’I never read my comments. Don’t ever read the comments.’ Honestly, when the teaser came out, I was at the D23 Expo and I was so happy. I didn’t see any of the negativity.”

Bailey told Variety last year that her grandparents also helped to drown out the backlash when the #NotMyAriel hashtag started trending on Twitter, sharing with her their personal encounters and experiences with racism.

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“The Little Mermaid” director Rob Marshall previously told Entertainment Weekly that Bailey was cast for the role, not to break barriers, but to deliver a remarkable performance.

“[The goal was to find someone who can be] incredibly strong, passionate, beautiful, smart, clever [and with] a great deal of fire and joy,” said Marshall.

Bailey had all of those qualities, plus the kind of voice the role of Ariel demands. As Marshall explained, “That voice is something that is so signature and so ethereal and so beautiful that it captures the heart of Eric and he looks for her for the entire film.”

Disney is set to open “The Little Mermaid” in theaters on May 26, 2023.

Hailing from Charlotte North Carolina, born litterateur Ezekiel J. Walker earned a B.A. in Psychology at Winston Salem State University. Walker later published his first creative nonfiction book and has...

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