One of the most iconic images that come to mind when thinking of Disney’s 1989 animated classic The Little Mermaid is Princess Ariel’s graceful hair flip as she breaks through the surface of the ocean. One of the reasons it’s so beautiful is because it’s almost impossible to create in real life – I’ve tried.
In the new live-action remake, Halle Bailey nearly broke her neck attempting to emulate the animated mermaid. The film obviously couldn’t do without a recreation of the hair flip shot. So here’s how Bailey and Rob Marshall made it happen for the cameras.
On Sherri Shepherd’s talk show, Halle dove into the story. In reference to the beautifully recreated shot, Sherri asks, “In the film, you do the iconic hair flip that Ariel does, but you have locs. Did you hurt your neck doing this??”
Here’s Halle’s reply,
YES I did. Yes, I did. It took me like 20 takes because, first of all, for those of you who have locs – our locs are heavy. And when we’re in the water, they get even heavier. So it was so funny because we were really trying to make it as beautiful as how it looks in the animated….the iconic shot of Ariel. So, it was a funny day when we got it!
She concludes, “My neck was over it.”
Here’s the whole interview with Sherri Shepherd, the hair conversation starts around the 6:35 mark.
Bailey later admitted to News.com.au that she needed someone to help her nail the hair flip!
I needed help because I have a lot of hair, and it’s really heavy in the water. So, there’s this lovely guy on the stunt team named, Dan. I’d come up and he would kind of push my hair back with me so it would look like I was doing it. But it looked way more graceful than I actually was.
See the interview on TikTok:
Despite all the trouble, everyone can agree, they definitely got the shot and it was beautiful!
Have you seen The Little Mermaid in theaters yet?