As Disney preps for more live-action remakes of their classic animated films, The Little Mermaid has just got a little bit of movement as Variety reports that Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?) has entered talks to play the film’s iconic villain, Ursula.
McCarthy’s potential casting is the first in what will be “contemporary and compelling casting choices” Disney plans to make for the film.
The live-action Little Mermaid will be directed by Mart Poppins Returns‘ Rob Marshall. Joining Marshall once again will be Lin-Manuel Miranda after working together on the Mary Poppins sequel. The Little Mermaid will incorporate songs from the original animated film as well as new ones developed by Miranda and longtime Disney collaborator and songwriter Alan Menken, who wrote many of the songs made famous by the film such as ‘Part of Your World’ and ‘Under The Sea’. Marshall, Miranda, Marc Platt and John DeLuca are producing from a script by Dave Magee.
The Little Mermaid followed Ariel, a 16 year old mermaid princess who dreams of living on the surface world. After making a deal with the sea witch Ursala, Ariel gets her wish and trades her fins for legs, but at the cost of her voice. As yet there’s been no word on casting for Ariel, although Spider-Man: Far From Home and The Greatest Showman actress Zendaya has been linked to the role.
There is currently no release date for The Little Mermaid yet. Disney has been prioritizing its live-action remakes lately with Dumbo and Aladdin having opened this year and The Lion King due next month.