8 Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About Disney’s ‘The Little Mermaid’
I ain’t gonna lie…The Little Mermaid is defineityl one of my favortie Disney movies. I love the story, the songs and I’m obsessed with Ursula. Even though I’m an adult, I still can’t help but watch it every once and awhile…it makes me so damn happy! Even as a mega-fan of the film, I was surprised by some of these facts. And as a complete internet addict who sees everything first and no longer experiences the joy of someone showing me something I’ve never seen…it’s nice to know that things can still surprise me. Here’s hoping that you have the same experience!
The Little Mermaid was Disney’s last film that used cel animation
Cel animation is the time-consuming animation process of putting drawings on clear sheets of plastic and then laying them over hand-painted backgrounds. I love the look, to me it’s absolutely gorgeous. Sadly, it was replaced by computer animation, much like we all be replaced one day by computers. It’s just a matter of time…I watch sci-fi movies. Humans are very time-consuming and impractical beings. We’re garbage.
‘Part of your World’ was almost cut from the film
WHAT? NO! Apparently after a test-audience full of children got antsy during the song, CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg wanted to cut the number. Luckily, the director prevailed and the song was kept and it’s a good thing too. This song is my jam and without it I would have to find something else to torture people with while performing karaoke.
Ursula was almost voice by someone else
Ursula is my not only my favorite character from the film, she’s actually one of my favorite characters from any film ever. And the performance by actress Pat Carroll is definitely part of her appeal. But it almost didn’t happen… the role was initially offered to Golden Girls actress Bea Arthur. After Arthur turned it down, the role went to Broadway vet Elaine Stritch, who lost it by getting into fights with composer, Howard Ashman. Wow. I can only dream of sounding as awesomely evil as Ursula. I mean I have the attitude but my voice is probably best described as human kitten.
Sebastian was originally a stuffy Brit
Rastafarian Sebastian was originally supposed to be a British butler named Clarence. The change was a boon to the film’s soundtrack, giving a calypso feel to Sebastian’s big numbers. And do we really need another stuffy British butler character in this world? I mean I would personally love to have a butler…how rad would that be? I totally want to be the female-version of Arthur!
Ursula’s look was based on drag queen Divine
YES! This is amazing. You gotta love the sick effer who came up with this idea! I mean nothing is less Disney than anything related to John Waters. Well, maybe not now that he has shows on Broadway, but back in the day his films were more known for showing Divine eat poop than they were for showing people singing and dancing in Hairspray. Did you also know that Ursula is NOT an octopus? It’s true…she only has 6 tentacles.I know…right? With all that junk in her trunk I guess it was hard to notice.
Patrick Stewart was originally supposed to voice King Triton
This would have been amazing! I mean no offense to Kenneth Mars who eventually got the gig, but we’re talking the actor who plays Captain PIcard and Professor X here. Maybe Ariel would have listened to her dad if that badass voice was telling her not to do something.
The Little Mermaid was almost passed on in favor of a Splash sequel
When the idea of an animated movie based on The Little Mermaid was first pitched to Disney CEO Jeffery Katzenberg, he rejected it, becasue he was working on a sequel to Splash and he was worried about over-saturating the market with mermaid flicks. Luckily, the sequel fell through! The comparisons to Splash is also the reason behind making Ariel a ginger. And I’m always for more awesome ginger role models, less ginger bashing. Yes, I’m a ginger.
It’s hinted that Ursula and King Triton are brother and sister
MIND BLOWN. In some deleted scenes, it’s strongly suggested that Ursula is King Triton’s sister and in the Broadway adaptation, it’s a major part of the storyline. What the hell kind of atomic disaster happened under the sea to make this possible? I guess my Aunt has some competition in the mega-bitch aunt department!
Which one do you think is the worst? Let me know @desijedeikin or in the comments below!