Halle Bailey Shares Interaction with Little Mermaid Super Fan Who 'Hugged Me So Tight' at Disney World

Halle Bailey is gushing over a sweet interaction with a “Little Mermaid” superfan at Disney World.

The 22-year-old singer — who plays Ariel in the upcoming live-action “Little Mermaid” film — took to Instagram to share a series of pictures and videos of her trip to the Florida theme park, including a sweet fan interaction with a little girl who was clearly excited about the highly-anticipated film.

“Met this beautiful baby Mila Rose who made me cry 🥺,” Bailey captioned the video. “She just hugged me so tight ❤️.”

“You’re so pretty,” the Chloe x Halle singer gushed in the clip, as someone off camera revealed that Ariel was the girl’s “favorite.” Halle responded saying, “Really? You’re so beautiful and sweet, what’s her name? Mila?”

She then got the tot to smile for the camera before taking a photo together.

While Bailey has unfortunately become the target of some racist hate for stepping into Ariel’s fins for the live-action adaptation, she and her family also know how important it is for a Black woman to take on the role. Speaking with Variety in August, she shared how her grandparents motivated her amid the backlash.

“It was an inspiring and beautiful thing to hear their words of encouragement, telling me, ‘You don’t understand what this is doing for us, for our community, for all the little Black and brown girls who are going to see themselves in you,'” Bailey shared at the time.

In fact, Disney’s newest mermaid noted that her younger self might have felt more confident in her skin if she had seen the original animated version of Ariel as a person of color.

“What that would have done for me, how that would have changed my confidence, my belief in myself, everything,” the “Grownish” star explained. “Things that seem so small to everyone else, it’s so big to us.”

Being a super-fan of the Disney classic growing up, Halle said that she hopes others who haven’t had that representation in the past will be able to see themselves in her as she graces the big screen.

“I want the little girl in me and the little girls just like me who are watching to know that they’re special, and that they should be a princess in every single way,” she gushed. “There’s no reason that they shouldn’t be. That reassurance was something that I needed.”

The movie hits theaters May 26, 2023.

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