Disney’s First Black Live-Action Prince Is Here To Be Our Saving Grace
Fans of “This Is Us” rejoice! 2020 has finally delivered our first Black Disney prince and we are here to praise the Imagineers. According to Entertainment Weekly, actor Niles Fitch, best known for his role as junior Randall on the hit show This Is Us, is set to play a character named Prince Tuma in a new Disney+ movie.
Secret Society of Second-Born Royals is a new film by Disney + that will bring on the Black Boy Magic.
The sci-fi fantasy is about second-born royals gifted with special powers and follows them as they learn to use their powers inorder to save the world. Prince Tuma, played by Fitch will be vital to the team’s success according to his bio by Disney+.
In an Instagram post about the ground-breaking news, Fitch expressed his excitement.
“Welcome Disney’s first Black prince,” he captioned the post.
Fortunately Entertainment Weekly as released first-look photos of the entire cast. You can check it out here.
According to Entertainment Weekly, Secret Society of Second-Born Royals hits the streaming site Disney+, this summer. News of Fitch’s casting comes on the heels of a true shake up in the world of Disney casting. of
Late last year, actor Christian Navarro called the company out for casting a white Prince Eric in the upcoming live-action adaptation of The Little Mermaid.
Lately, we’ve seen a resurgence in film and television remakes that are particularly less white than the originals.
Those projects include the remake of “West Side Story,” “The Craft,” “Party Of Five,” and “The Lion King.” The latest retelling of an animation classic has some people up in arms for the most ridiculous of reasons.
Disney is producing a live-action/CGI version of “The Little Mermaid” starring 19-year-old Halle Bailey.
Bailey is one-half of the singing group Chloe and Halle, and also stars in “Grown-ish.” Rob Marshall is set to direct and also stars Melissa McCarthy, Awkwafina, and Jacob Tremblay. Lin-Manuel Miranda has also been pinned to co-produce the film for Disney.
“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,” Rob Marshall, said in a statement according to People magazine.
Critics are lashing out at the casting and say Ariel should not be Black.
Those that are against the casting of “The Little Mermaid” say the actress needs to be white, as the original character was Danish. People are taking to social media to air their grievances. Some are using the hashtag #NotMyAriel while others started a Facebook group under the name, “Christian’s Against the Little Mermaid (Boycott Halle Bailey),” which has been deleted, albeit after attracting 50,000 members.
“Disney has been ruining our childhood classics for the past several years. Their live-action adaptations have been abysmal but now they have gone too far!!!” reads the group’s welcome message according to Slate. “Disney has jumped on the bandwagon of turning prominent red-headed, fair skinned characters into POC. Why not just create a new character? Why is Hollywood trying to wipe out gingers???”
Now Freeform, the network that airs Bailey’s show “Grown-ish” is firing back and supporting their actress.
“Yes. The original author of The Little Mermaid was Danish. Ariel…is a mermaid,” Freeform said in an Instagram post. “She lives in an underwater kingdom in international waters and can legit swim wherever she wants (even though that often upsets King Triton, absolute zaddy). But for the sake of argument, let’s say that Ariel, too, is Danish. Danish mermaids can be black because Danish *people* can be black. Ariel can sneak up to the surface at any time with her pals Scuttle and the *ahem* Jamaican crab Sebastian (sorry, Flounder!) and keep that bronze base tight. Black Danish people and this mer-folk can also *genetically* (!!!) have red hair.”
They go on to say, “But spoiler alert – bring it back to the top – the character of Ariel is a work of fiction. So after all this is said and done, and you still cannot get past the idea that choosing the incredible, sensational, highly-talented, gorgeous Halle Bailey is anything other than the INSPIRED casting that it is because she ‘doesn’t look like the cartoon one,’ oh boy, do I have some news for you…about you.”
The post has been liked more than 50,000 times.
Fans — celebrities as well — are voicing their support for this awesome casting call.
It’s kind of funny how savage people are over who can play a mermaid.
Also, red-headed people are not just white.
Gingers come in every color.
Bailey got a shout out from Halle Berry
This is legendary especially coming from an Academy Award winner. By the way, people on social media actually thought that Halley Berry — not Hailey Bailey — was cast in the film. Okay, we can see why people would make that mistake, but we love the fact that Berry gave her a shoutout.
Janelle Monáe is praising her new role.
It is indeed a perfect choice! Have you heard her sing? She sounds like an angel.
Mariah Carey sent her a congratulatory tweet.
So many young kids will experience Ariel for the very first time.
Lin-Manuel Miranda also celebrated this casting, that we’re sure he had a say in.
He is co-producing the film after all.
As we previously mentioned Jacob Tremblay will star in the film, as Flounder, Awkwafina will be Scuttle, Melissa McCarthy will play Ursula. Although people are livid about that as well. They’re saying a black person should play the role, Ursula. But as one person pointed out, Ursula was neither white or black.
“I see a ton of people debating on if Ursula is white or black, and I have a definitive answer,” a person on Twitter said. “You’re all color blind, she is quite clearly purple – with some grayish or teal-ish tint, depending on the ambient light,” another Twitter user who got in on the debate declared.”
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