Fans Believe ‘The Little Mermaid’ Live-Action Includes a Kate Middleton Jab

Kate Middleton with Live Action Little Mermaid Ariel
Images Credit: Jeff Amann, Flickr / Disney

Well, this is certainly controversial!

The live-action version of The Little Mermaid premiered to the world on May 26, 2023. Fans of the 1989 animated film geared up to see the new and extended version of the beloved film in live-action form. While reviews were mixed, there is some controversy surrounding the film.

Halle Bailey as Ariel in 'Little Mermaid' remake

Credit: Disney

Related: Halle Bailey Speaks Up, Sends Message To “Supportive” Fans

Interestingly enough, viewers suggest the film caused quite a controversy in the royal family over an unsavory comment about Kate Middleton.

Kate Middleton and ‘The Little Mermaid’

The Walt Disney Company is known for keeping itself out of gossip and celebrity drama. However, The Little Mermaid left some feeling quite suspicious about Disney’s intentions.

According to Page Six, a filmgoer was caught off guard by a slide remark made in the live-action film. The scene in question happens when Prince Eric tries to figure out Ariel’s name. The scene is memorable as the two spend time together in a small boat as Sebastian the crab tries to lure Prince Eric into kissing Ariel. The comment explained to Page Six notes:

“Ariel has sacrificed her voice in order to get to the surface and [meet] Prince Eric. She can’t speak so he tries to guess her name, His first guess is Diana. His second guess is Catherine, but after [Ariel gives a disgusted] reaction, he [concludes] ‘OK, definitely not Catherine.’”

Halle Bailey The Little Mermaid part of your world disney

Credit: Disney

Related: Royal Family Reveals Favorite Walt Disney World Ride After Recent Visit

Have you ever noticed this reference while watching the film?

Is This a Mistake?

The viewer and many others see this moment as a clear jab at Kate Middleton… or Catherine, Princess of Wales, a member of the British royal family.

Fans believe the jab is in reference to the ongoing drama between Kate and Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex.

In the past, Markle has compared herself to Princess Ariel. She explained that she empathizes with Ariel because “…she falls in love with the prince and because of that she loses her voice.”

Halle Bailey live-action 'the little mermaid' 2023

Credit: Disney

Related: Live-Action ‘Little Mermaid’ Continues to DOMINATE, Breaking Yet Another Record

Where is Kate Middleton?

While Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have attempted to step away from the spotlight, Kate Middleton has recently become the main topic of discussion among many news networks.

In January 2024, Kensington Palace announced that “Kate Middleton had undergone planned abdominal surgery and would not resume public duties until ‘after Easter’ at the earliest.” That said, many fans are speculating there are broader health issues or secrets that are keeping Middleton from the public eye.

Kate Middleton in two side by side photos

Images Credit: Jeff Amann, Flickr

Related: Meghan Markle Narrates Disneynature Film, ‘Elephant’

While it is unclear if Disney meant the live-action The Little Mermaid (2023) line about “Catherine” as an insult or if it was just an unfortunate accident, it was definitely enough to cause a stir when the film hit theatres.

The live-action The Little Mermaid, which stars Halle Bailey as Ariel, Jonah Hauer-King as Prince Eric, and Melissa McCarthy as Ursula, is now available to stream on Disney+.

About Eva Miller

Eva was born and raised in the beautiful state of Oregon but has since relocated and lives in New York City. Since she was young, Eva has loved to perform in musicals, especially Disney ones! Through performing, Disney’s music became the soundtrack of her childhood. Today, Eva loves to write about all the exciting happenings for the Walt Disney Company. In her free time, Eva loves to travel, spend time in nature, and go to Broadway shows. Her favorite Disney movie is 'Lilo and Stitch,' and her favorite Park is Disney's Animal Kingdom.

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