‘It would be disingenuous to imply it was coincidental’: Film critic suggests Disney takes swipe at Kate Middleton in remake

17 May 2023, 16:34 | Updated: 17 May 2023, 16:37

The film changes the names from the original animation.
The film changes the names from the original animation. Picture: Disney/Alamy

By Jenny Medlicott

A live action remake of The Little Mermaid appears to take a subtle dig at Kate Middleton during one scene, according to a film critic.

Film critics have started viewings of the new Disney remake, The Little Mermaid, ahead of its release on May 26 – and some have picked up on one interesting detail.

The film features Halle Bailey, Melissa McCarthy and Jonah Hauer-King and its UK premiere was held this week.

A reviewer who has attended one of the film viewings told Page Six, however, that the movie seems to make a reference to the British royal family.

The reviewer told Page Six of a scene where Ariel is unable to speak and Prince Eric attempts to guess her name.

They said: “His first guess is Diana. His second guess is Catherine, but after [Ariel gives a disgusted] reaction, he [concludes] ‘OK, definitely not Catherine.”

In the original animation, a similar scene takes place, as Ariel gives up her voice in exchange for a chance to explore beyond the sea.

While the Disney prince does guess the name Diana in the original animation, his follow-up guesses were Mildred and Rachel – not Catherine.

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A film critic has suggested the name choices are more than coincidence.
A film critic has suggested the name choices are more than coincidence. Picture: Disney

Read more: Princess of Wales reveals she 'never expected to become a royal' but she 'fell in love with William'

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Although the disgusted reaction is not just exclusive to the name Catherine, as the mermaid does react with the same grimace after hearing the alternate names Mildred and Rachel in the original.

The name Diana used alongside Catherine has led some to believe the name choices were more than coincidence.

The critic added: “Disney would be disingenuous to imply those name choices were coincidental.”

But not all are convinced as some social media users have labelled the comparison a "reach".

The comparison happens to coincide with a previous comment made by Meghan Markle in her infamous 2021 Oprah Winfrey interview, as she said she loves the 1989 Disney film because she identifies with the mermaid.

She revealed her thoughts at the time: "I went, ‘Oh my God, she falls in love with the prince and because of that she loses her voice'."

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