Halle Bailey may be starring opposite another pop star in Disney’s live-action remake of The Little Mermaid. Multiple outlets are reporting that Harry Styles, formerly of the British boy band One Direction, is in early talks to play the pivotal role of Prince Eric in the upcoming film.
Disney has so far confirmed that Bailey will play the eponymous role of Ariel, a mermaid princess who dreams of walking among humans on land. In the 1989 animated movie, she trades her singing voice to the sea witch Ursula in exchange for legs. Rumor has it that Melissa McCarthy will play the shapeshifting Ursula, while Awkwafina and Jacob Tremblay will reportedly play Ariel’s friends Scuttle and Flounder, respectively.
If Styles joins the cast as Prince Eric, The Little Mermaid will be his second feature film. Though he technically made his acting debut on a 2012 episode of Nickelodeon’s iCarly (playing Harry Styles, a.k.a. himself), his first movie was 2017’s Dunkirk, directed by Christopher Nolan.
Director Rob Marshall will co-produce the live-action The Little Mermaid alongside John DeLuca, Marc Platt and Lin-Manuel Miranda. In addition to songs by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, the live-action adaptation will also feature new songs by Menken and Miranda. Production is slated to begin in early 2020.