The astonishing link between Alyssa Milano and Ariel from Disney's 'Little Mermaid'
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: The casting of Ariel in ‘The Little Mermaid’ movies has always been interesting at best. As the live-action remake of the 1989 Disney classic is ready to hit the theaters on Friday, May 26, it’s high time for us to revise our knowledge of the celluloid rendition of the age-old fairy tale. There are very few cinema buffs who have not seen Little ‘Ariel’ Mermaid ever? But as Halle Bailey is essaying the titular role in the Rob Marshall directorial, do you know who was the initial inspiration for the animated Ariel?
As the makers of the animated film were looking for a reference to base the fairy tale character on, they found a ready inspiration in the young Alyssa Milano. The ‘Mistresses’ actress herself revealed the fact in an episode of ‘The Wendy Williams Show’ in 2013 that she was the inspiration behind the iconic red-haired wide-eyed Disney princess.
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When the host asked her, "Were you the inspiration for this character [Ariel]?" her reply unsurprisingly was, "I actually was.” She later continued to explain that even she came to know while hosting the making of the 1989 ‘The Little Mermaid’, as she said, "I didn't know that when it was going on, but they asked me to host the making of The Little Mermaid and it came out there that the drawing and likeness of The Little Mermaid was based on pictures of me from when I was younger, which is so cool!" as per E! News.
To which Williams joked then, "Doesn't that just make you want to dye your hair red and wear a clamshell bra all the time?" Going with the jovial tone of the conversation, ‘The Charmed’ actress said, "Yes," before adding "That's how I walk around at home."
According to Yahoo! Entertainment, animation artist Glen Keane, who was tasked with breathing life into Ariel, actually used Milano’s photos from the time when she was in the show ‘Who’s The Boss’ that ran from 1984-1992. It is also said that actress Sherri Stoner’s movements served as the inspiration for Ariel’s energetic moves.
While the animated flick portrayed Ariel as a traditional red-haired white-skinned beauty that was in lieu of the supposed Eurocentrism and white supremacy, the casting of Halle Bailey, a dark-skinned actress, caused uproar in the Internet, with dissenters even popularizing the catchphrase “#Notmyariel” to voice their disapproval. Naturally, there are two polarizing sides of the spectrum. While there are some fans supporting the move as a welcoming change in Hollywood to break the racial stereotypes, others were not so forgiving of the new on-screen Ariel who broke their long-standing impression of the fan-beloved character who is geographically suspected to live near Denmark, a predominantly white country.