I Regret to Report That Harry Styles Won't Be Our Prince Eric, After All

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I’m very sorry to report to you and to Maria Sherman that Harry Styles has robbed us of the opportunity to watch Halle Bailey pull his dripping wet body out of the ocean.

The Wrap reports that Styles has turned down the role of Prince Eric in the upcoming live-action remake of The Little Mermaid, despite some earlier rumors that he’d officially been added to the cast.

Bailey, known best as one-half of R&B duo Chloe x Halle, still has the title role in the Rob Marshall-directed remake. The cast also includes Awkwafina, who’ll play Scuttle the Seagull (RIP Buddy Hackett), and Jacob Tremblay from Room, who will play Flounder. Melissa McCarthy is in talks to portray Ursula the Sea Witch, though that casting is still unconfirmed.

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I’m still pretty unconvinced by these live-action remakes, in part because I consider the animated originals my own family, and also because so far they’ve mostly sucked). Still, this one does sound promising, despite the whole “giving up your voice/life for love/lust” premise that The Little Mermaid hinges on. Of course, it would be wholly improved if it also starred Styles, lost at sea in Prince Eric’s finest white button-down, but perhaps he can get onboard for the live-action remake of The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea, which was an unexpected banger.

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