Josh Gad attends the Los Angele premiere for Hulu’s “History of the World, Part II” at Hollywood Legion Theater on February 27, 2023, in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images)
*Actor Josh Gad is calling out the “pathetic” people online who are trolling R&B singer Halle Bailey for playing princess Ariel in Disney’s remake of “The Little Mermaid.”
As we reported previously, many Disney fans are livid that a Black woman has been cast to play the fictional white character.
“Imagine being so broken and pathetic in life that your chief concern is the skin color of … a make-believe singing mermaid,” Gad wrote on Twitter.
When a “Little Mermaid” teaser trailer dropped on Feb. 15, Bailey once again found herself targeted by haters on social media.
Imagine being so broken and pathetic in life that your chief concern is the skin color of… a make-believe singing mermaid. https://t.co/7F6F8LT2b9
— Josh Gad (@joshgad) March 16, 2023
“As a Black person, you just expect it and it’s not really a shock anymore,” Bailey told The Face in a recent interview. ”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.”
“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.”
The official “Little Mermaid” trailer debuted Sunday during the Oscars and has been viewed on YouTube more than 8.5 million times. It has received 191,000 likes and more than 300,000 “dislikes,” according to Call to Activism, MSN reports.
Halle Bailey as Ariel the Mermaid
Disney released the teaser trailer in September and it reportedly was disliked 3 million times.
“The important thing about the controversy surrounding Halle Bailey’s casting is that we remember a beautiful and talented actress won the role. We can’t allow racism to ever be normalized,” Call to Activism tweeted.
“The Little Mermaid” is being helmed by Oscar-nominated director Rob Marshall and also stars Javier Bardem as King Triton, Jonah Hauer-King as Prince Eric, Daveed Diggs as Sebastian, Jacob Tremblay as Flounder and Awkwafina as Scuttle.
The movie is slated it hit U.S. theaters on May 26.
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