Javier Bardem in Talks for Disney’s ‘Little Mermaid’

Javier Bardem is in early talks to join Disney’s upcoming live-action remake of the 1989 animated musical, ‘The Little Mermaid.’ According to Variety, the Academy Award-winning actor is eyeing the pivotal role of King Triton, father of Ariel, the protagonist who is being played by Halle Bailey. Harry Styles also joins the project as Ariel’s sweetheart, the human Prince Eric. Rob Marshall is directing the live-action/CGI hybrid feature from a screenplay by David Magee.

Alan Menken, who won original song and score Oscars for 1989 original, is set to recreate the magical music for the upcoming live-action version. The legendary tunesmith will also create a brand new song along with lyricist Lin-Manuel Miranda for the movie. Marc Platt, who was a crew member in Disney’s ‘Mary Poppins Returns’ and an executive producer in ‘Aladdin,’ is producing ‘The Little Mermaid’ along with Marshall, John DeLuca and Miranda.

The plot follows the teen mermaid Ariel who falls head over heels for the charming human Prince Eric. She wants to live with the love of her life on land and seeks help with the sea witch Ursula. But the vicious witch has her own plans in mind. She demands the soulful voice of Ariel in return for a pair of human legs.

Other cast includes Melissa McCarthy as the villainous Ursula, Awkwafina and Jacob Tremblay.

When the original animated version of ‘The Little Mermaid’ released almost three decades ago, it went on to become the flag-bearer of Disney’s renaissance. The film emerged as a topper at the box office while its songs ‘Under the Sea,’ ‘Part of Your World’ and ‘Kiss the Girl’ were on everyone’s lips.

Bardem has last seen in Asghar Farhadi’s Spanish psychological thriller ‘Everybody Knows‘ alongside Penelope Cruz. His upcoming projects include Legendary’s reboot of ‘Dune’ which also stars Timothee Chalamet and Josh Brolin. Described as one of the most intriguing projects under production, ‘Dune’ is directed by ace filmmaker and Oscar-nominee Denis Villeneuve based on the iconic sci-fi novel of the same name by Frank Herbert.

The Spanish actor emerged as one of the legendary performers working today with titles like ‘No Country for Old Men,’ which earned him an Oscar, ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales,’ ‘Before Night Falls,’ ‘mother!’ and ‘Skyfall,’ and ‘Loving Pablo.’

‘The Little Mermaid’ is set to start rolling production in April 2020. Principal photography is expected to cover locales like Cayman Islands, South Africa, as well as Maro, La Cala, Torre del Mar, Almayate, Chilches, Benajarafe, and Torrox.

Cover Image Courtesy: Disney (Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales).