September 26, 2022

This year’s 12th edition of the Scary Movies festival at Film at Lincoln Center premiered Ari Aster’s extended version of “Midsommar” this past Saturday.
If you really want to divide and polarize America then just do what Disney did. The Mouse House decided to cast R&B singer Halle Bailey to play Ariel in their live-action remake of “The Little Mermaid.” The purists are angry.
The project will be Bailey’s feature film debut. Disney hired-hand Rob Marshall (“Mary Poppins Returns”) will direct, with Lin-Manuel Miranda penning brand-new songs. Sounds like fun.
In case you didn’t notice, Bailey is African-American and Ariel is a character synonymous with white, redhead-culture. Whatever that means. A lot of movie fans wanted none of that this week and expressed their discontentment, which resulted in 2.4 million dislikes of the trailer in YouTube.
There is currently a 5:1 ratio of dislikes to likes.
Whereas others, especially the media, were celebrating the inclusive and diverse casting of the character. Me? I couldn’t care less. It’s just another mass-marketed Disney movie — although, I do wonder if this casting will result in less tickets sold.
There’s clearly a backlash of fans overwhelming all efforts at this sort of inclusive casting. It’s been occurring for five years now. YouTube took off the dislikes from the trailer, but Valiant News managed to find an internet extension that could provide the 2.4 million dislikes stat.
Valiant News was able to independently confirm the number of dislikes on the video by using a browser extension, despite YouTube’s decision to block the dislike count.
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