The Little Mermaid Trailer Released During the Oscars

Just as Disney promised earlier this week, a trailer for The Little Mermaid dropped during tonight's 95th Academy Awards, giving fans a look into the underwater world of the live-action reimagining of one of the most beloved films of Disney's renaissance era. Halle Bailey and Melissa McCarthy head up the film, which is set for release in May. A poster was released earlier this week, giving a new look at Bailey's Ariel and promising an Oscar night trailer. The film is the latest in a string of big-budget live-action adaptations of Disney's animated classics. Unlike Mulan, it seems as though The Little Mermaid will lean into its talking animal sidekicks, though.

The Jungle BookBeauty and the BeastCruellaAladdin, and The Lion King have all been huge hits for Disney, with relatively few misses. Mulan and Pinocchio both headed straight to Disney+, and both of those were received less well...but at least in Pinocchio's case, it seems likely the decision to keep it out of theaters was about concerns over its appeal and box office potential. The Little Mermaid is heading to cinemas. You can see the trailer below.

Here's the official synopsis, per Disney: The Little Mermaid, visionary filmmaker Rob Marshall's live-action reimagining of the studio's Oscar®-winning animated musical classic, opens exclusively in theaters nationwide May 26, 2023. 

The Little Mermaid is the beloved story of Ariel, a beautiful and spirited young mermaid with a thirst for adventure. The youngest of King Triton's daughters, and the most defiant, Ariel longs to find out more about the world beyond the sea, and while visiting the surface, falls for the dashing Prince Eric. While mermaids are forbidden to interact with humans, Ariel must follow her heart. She makes a deal with the evil sea witch, Ursula, which gives her a chance to experience life on land, but ultimately places her life – and her father's crown – in jeopardy.

The film stars singer and actress Halle Bailey (grown-ish) as Ariel; Tony Award® winner Daveed Diggs (Hamilton, Snowpiercer) as the voice of Sebastian; Jacob Tremblay (Luca, Room) as the voice of Flounder; Awkwafina (Raya and the Last Dragon) as the voice of Scuttle; Jonah Hauer-King (A Dog's Way Home) as Prince Eric; Art Malik (Homeland) as Sir Grimsby; Noma Dumezweni (Mary Poppins Returns) as Queen Selina; with Oscar® winner Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men, Being the Ricardos) as King Triton; and two-time Academy Award® nominee Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?Bridesmaids) as Ursula.

The Little Mermaid is directed by Oscar® nominee Rob Marshall ("Chicago," "Mary Poppins Returns"), and written by two-time Oscar nominee David Magee (Life of Pi, Finding Neverland), with a live-action story adaptation by David Magee, Rob Marshall, and two-time Emmy winner John DeLuca (Tony Bennett: An American Classic), based on the short story by Hans Christian Andersen, and the Disney animated film by Ron Clements and John Musker. The film is produced by two-time Emmy® winner Marc Platt (Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert, Grease Live!), three-time Tony Award® winner Lin-Manuel Miranda (HamiltonIn the Heights), Rob Marshall, and John DeLuca, with Jeffrey Silver (The Lion King) serving as executive producer. The score is by multiple Academy Award® winner Alan Menken (Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin), who won two Oscars® for the music in the animated version of The Little Mermaid, with music supervised and produced by Mike Higham (Mary Poppins Returns, Into the Woods). Music is by Alan Menken, lyrics are by Howard Ashman and new lyrics are by Lin-Manuel Miranda.