At just 19 years old, Halle Bailey can add even more bragging rights to her already impressive resume: she’s a Disney princess! The actress and talented singer was cast as Ariel in the upcoming live action-film for Little Mermaid, becoming the second Black actress to play a live-action Disney princess after Brandy played Cinderella in 1997, as Twitter user @BrandyLegion pointed out. It’s a “dream come true” for the rising star, which Halle tweeted after news of her big role broke on July 3.
Halle edged out many other actresses for the coveted role! “After an extensive search, it was abundantly clear that Halle possesses that rare combination of spirit, heart, youth, innocence, and substance — plus a glorious singing voice — all intrinsic qualities necessary to play this iconic role,” director Rob Marshall wrote in a statement, obtained by HollywoodLife. Extra emphasis on “glorious singing voice” — here’s what you should know about the actress who’ll soon be covering classics like “Under the Sea” on the big screen!
1. She makes up one half of the singing duo Chloe X Halle. Halle is most known for her duets with older sister Chloe! Although they play twins on the small screen, they’re actually two years apart in age (Halle was born in 2000, Chloe in 1998). The sisters have come a long way since uploading song covers on YouTube and releasing their debut EP, Sugar Symphony, in April 2016 — they recorded the theme song, “Grown,” for the televesion series Grown-ish, dropped their debut album The Kids Are Alright in March 2018, and performed at both the 2019 Grammy Awards and the 2019 Super Bowl halftime show!
2. Halle stars on the Freeform show Grown-ish. Not only is her and Chloe’s music featured on the spin-off show to Black-ish, the sisters were cast to play twins on the show in 2018. They play track stars Skyler and Jazlyn on Grown-ish.
dream come true… 🧜🏽♀️🌊 pic.twitter.com/sndjYUS6wO
— chloe x halle (@chloexhalle) July 3, 2019
3. Beyoncé is basically Halle and Chloe’s mentor. Queen Bey opened her stage for the sisters, twice! Chloe and Halle opened for the icon during the European leg of The Formation World Tour, and also opened for Beyoncé and JAY-Z on the U.S. leg of the On the Run Tour II. You can also catch Halle and Chloe make cameos in the visual album for Lemonade.
4. The singer made her film debut alongside Queen Latifah. In 2007, Halle earned her first ever acting credit in Latifah’s comedy, Last Holiday.
5. Halle and her sister earned two nominations at the 2019 Grammy Awards. She and Chloe earned nods for “Best New Artist” and “The Kids Are Alright.” The sisters also wowed on stage with their dynamic performance of “Best Urban Contemporary Album.”