The Little Mermaid's New Prince Eric Is Not Harry Styles

Image: Disney/Getty

Back when it was okay to enjoy things—like, this summer, when Disney announced that Halle Bailey of R&B twin duo Chloe x Halle would play Ariel in the live-action remake of The Little Mermaid—there were rumors that Harry Styles might star alongside her as Prince Eric. Selfishly, I was enthralled. Prince Eric and his big, stupid, beautiful face was my first real crush, and Harry Styles is my husband. Talk about a full-circle moment! Alas, he turned down the role, and on Wednesday, Variety announced who accepted it: actor Jonah Hauer-King.

My immediate reaction of “Who?” became “He’s cute,” followed by, “He’s not Harry Styles.” Hauer-King looks nothing like the image my horny 7-year-old mind drafted for old blue eyes here, and that’s upsetting, but what’s more upsetting is that I had a crush on the big dolt in the first place. Ariel gives up her voice to be with this man. I’ll barely commute to North Brooklyn for mine, and he’s cute. Priorities, you know?

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Anyway, apparently Hauer-King is 24, from London, and recently starred in a movie titled A Dog’s Way Home, which I find to be excruciatingly endearing, even if he did not portray a dog. He can stay. I won’t fight him. It’s the character of Prince Eric I’m after. Don’t kiss this girl, she bites back.

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Maria Sherman

Senior Writer, Jezebel