‘The Little Mermaid’ Trailer Has Most Live-Action Film Views In Years, But The Racism!


During the recent Oscars ceremony on ABC, Disney essentially paid itself $10 million for a two-minute trailer for their live-action ‘The Little Mermaid’ trailer. Now the media, like The Hollywood Reporter, are touting that this film has the most viewed live-action trailer since ‘The Lion King’ adaptation. While true, it isn’t the “win” Disney is trying to spin.

The newest ‘Little Mermaid’ trailer has garnered 9 million views (after five days) which trails far behind other movie trailers, hence the “live-action” caveat. However, the number the Hollywood Reporter is running with is 108 million global views within 24 hours which they don’t source, so we could not confirm.

What is hidden is the downvotes. The most recent film trailer sits with 209k upvotes to 1.1 million downvotes. We can not confirm the number globally for either trailer views or downvotes to upvotes. The first teaser trailer is allegedly one of the most disliked trailers on YouTube.

Aside from the pop culture media trying to spin this as an “incredibly popular” trailer, they are trying to argue that it’s only downvoted due to “racism” due to fans not being happy about the changes to the character of Ariel. While I am sure that is the case for part of it, that doesn’t account for all of it.

The truth is that many of the live-action adaptations feel hollow, and viewers are tired of Disney pushing these out. Plus, some things do not translate well to live action, i.e., Scuttle, Flounder, and Sebastian. Many also complain that the film trailer is too dark. For that one, I would argue to wait and see because many of the scenes shown were also darker in tone in the original animated film. But Ariel’s friends look awful, so not everything translates well to live action.

It’s gotten so bad that any criticism of the film is immediately labeled “racism.” Much like was saw with criticism about “The Last Jedi” was labeled “misogyny” or ‘Lightyear’ was immediately labeled “bigotry.” There were plenty of reasons people didn’t like either, and not liking women (I’m a woman and didn’t like ‘The Last Jedi’) or the tiny same-sex kiss scene was the least of them. (The media doesn’t seem to understand that not everyone who doesn’t like something isn’t a dastardly Republican.)

Activists are calling out any dislike of the trailer as being done by “MAGA racists.” There are a lot of people who aren’t sold on this film that did not vote for Trump. There are also a lot of non-white people who voted for Trump.

Once again, dislike of a Disney film makes you their version of a terrible person, and the worst person ever is somehow a Republican to these people.

It’s the same thing we saw with ‘Lightyear’ and ‘Strange World.’ Not liking them was because you hate LGBTQ+ people and not because the films weren’t good. For ‘Lightyear,’ many people didn’t like that it wasn’t the toy version of Buzz.

Even Josh Gad is on social media trying to amplify this awful narrative:

“Imagine being so broken and pathetic in life that your chief concern is the skin color of… a make-believe singing mermaid.”

Imagine not liking a trailer for another one of Disney’s live-action remakes, and Olaf calls you “broken and pathetic.”

Anytime a film fails the media is quick to blame the failure on the reaction to minority characters, even if they aren’t the main focus of the movie. This would indicate that only a handful of “good” people exist and those people were the ones that went to the movie. Not going to see a film, for any reason, is twisted to mean you don’t like (insert minority here.) There is no way to win, except to love every film or show that comes out.

Not liking a race swap on a character does not make someone a racist. Not enjoying Disney live-action adaptations does not make someone a racist. Not liking how characters like Flounder, Sebastian, and Scuttle look in a film does not make someone a racist. Not going to see this film does not make someone a racist. Going to see the movie does not mean that someone is not a racist.

Frankly, it’s stupid and divisive. The film might be really good. We don’t know as it isn’t out yet. But being trepidatious based on a trailer and previous live-action re-imaginings isn’t grounds for labeling. Not liking this version of Ariel does not mean you are a bad person unless you legitimately hate on the actress herself based on her race, then you might be.

Many fans are tired of Hollywood using diversity as a shield from criticism. Sometimes things are terrible, and it has nothing to do with the “representation.” But using diversity and inclusion as a shield isn’t right. Not everyone disliking something is a terrible person.

With this film, I’ve been seeing more and more people losing interest after each new trailer comes out. Usually based on reasons that don’t include Halle Bailey, but that ruins the narrative, so it’s easier to label everyone.

We don’t know how good or bad it will be. It isn’t even out yet.

The Little Mermaid will hit theaters on May 26, 2023.

Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, opinionated fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal Theme Parks, Themed Entertainment and related Pop Culture from a consumer's point of view. Opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its editors, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial news source and has no connection to The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other company that we may cover.