Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” live-action adaptation changes the lyrics of the original

© Disney
© Disney

Next May, we will be whisked away to a magnificent underwater world in “The Little Mermaid,” which boasts impressive visuals and emotional songs. However, a few changes had to be made to the music.

With their live-action adaptations, Disney drapes their classic cartoons in modern garb and grants a completely new generation access to these fairytale stories. “The Little Mermaid” awaits us as the next film adaptation next month.

The animated film debuted on the big screen in 1989 and captivated audiences with its beautiful musical pieces. But, as composer Alan Menken revealed in an interview with Vanity Fair, two of the most famous songs were adapted for the remake. However, the reason for the changes is understandable, as the lyrics could be perceived as offensive by some viewers from today’s perspective. The 73-year-old musician explained:

“There are some lyrical changes in ‘Kiss the Girl’ because people have been very sensitive to the idea of [Prince Eric] imposing on [Ariel] in any way. In ‘Poor Unfortunate Souls,’ we reworked some lines that might make young girls feel like they shouldn’t raise their voices, although Ursula is clearly manipulating Ariel into having her vote.”

Haven’t been able to get a picture of the live-action adaptation yet? Then the following trailer will help you get a first impression:

The Music of “The Little Mermaid”

Alan Menken has worked as a composer for Disney since the 1989 “The Little Mermaid” animated film. In addition to the underwater adventure, he also provided the musical accompaniment for “Beauty and the Beast” and “Aladdin” (both the cartoons and the live-action adaptations).

Disney has also received active support for the music department of the remake. These include filmmakers Benj Pasek (“The Greatest Showman”), Justin Paul (“La La Land”), Robert Lopez (“WandaVision”), Kirsten Anderson-Lopez (“Frozen: Totally Unabashed”) and Lin-Manuel Miranda (“Hamilton”).

From May 25, 2023, we can find out how the slightly modified pieces of “The Little Mermaid” new edition will ultimately sound in cinemas. If you would like to watch the original again beforehand, you will find the animated film “The Little Mermaid” as well as all other Disney classics and live-action adaptations in the Disney+ range. If you don’t have a subscription yet, you can secure your membership here.

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