Harry Styles Playing Prince Eric in The Little Mermaid

It’s certainly true that news travels fastest when a member of One Direction is involved. At least, that’s what Twitter proved on Tuesday afternoon when reports surfaced that Harry Styles had finally signed on to play Prince Eric opposite Halle Bailey’s Ariel in the upcoming live-action adaptation of The Little Mermaid. After just a couple of tweets, which have now been deleted, Prince Eric has become a trending topic on Twitter.

Popular theater chains AMC and Regal both tweeted pictures of Harry Styles on Tuesday, saying that Disney had officially signed the actor/musician to play Prince Eric in The Little Mermaid. The tweets were almost instantly deleted, but that didn’t stop the fandom online from collectively losing it.

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It was reported at the beginning of July that Styles was in “early talks” to play Prince Eric, but that nothing had been signed or made official just yet. Disney confirmed that they haven’t made any official decision yet.

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The first report of Harry Styles being confirmed as Prince Eric came from The DisInsider earlier in the day. Vanity Fair also tweeted that Styles had been cast, only to delete the tweet and change the message to include the word “reportedly.”

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So, as of late Tuesday afternoon, Harry Styles has not been cast as Prince Eric in The Little Mermaid. At least, not yet. There’s more than a little bit of smoke surrounding this situation, so an official announcement from Disney sometime in the near future wouldn’t be all that surprising.

For now, the cast of The Little Mermaid includes Halle Bailey, Awkwafina, Jacob Tremblay, and Javier Bardem. Melissa McCarthy had reportedly been cast as the villainous Ursula. Rob Marshall is directing