Halle Bailey is expressing her gratitude.
The Little Mermaid star shared a candid message about what it means to be in the public eye—and why she's appreciative of those who lead with kindness.
"I just also wanna say," the 23-year-old wrote on her Dec. 5 Instagram Story, "I'm so very grateful for my real supporters who are respectful of women's bodies and loving..."
She added, "Being under a microscope is not easy but for the real ones who show unconditional love religiously I appreciate you. I feel so blessed and grateful."
Halle's post came right after a slide teasing her upcoming with Rachel Zegler—who stars in the upcoming Snow White adaptation—for Variety's "Actors on Actors" series. The pairing is sound, as they are both are part of the next generation of Disney princesses in the live-action remakes—and, unfortunately, have the shared experience of facing criticism over their castings.
For her part, Halle's casting as Ariel as a Black woman received racist backlash, to the point that Disney's cable network, Freeform, released a statement defending the choice. And while Halle at one point admitted to E! News she felt "pressure" regarding taking on such an iconic role, that was gone by the time the premiere came around in November 2022, again telling E! News, ""I did my best, that's all I can do. I'm just really grateful to see it all play out."
So when Rachel's casting as Snow White began to stir up similar criticisms—to the point where the 22-year-old ultimately spoke out on social media, thanking supporters but asking she not be tagged in hateful comments—Halle made it clear she was thrilled to have Rachel as part of her world.
"We love you so much, truly the perfect princess," Halle tweeted to Rachel in July, to which the West Side Story star replied, "my sweetest girl, i love you always."
Rachel has previously spoken about what her casting as the classic princess in meant to her.
"Never in a million years did I imagine that this would be a possibility for me," the 22-year-old said to Andrew Garfield during a separate "Actors on Actors" sit-down in January 2022. "You don't normally see Snow Whites that are of Latin descent. Even though Snow White is really a big deal in Spanish-speaking countries. Blanca Nieves is a huge icon whether you're talking about the Disney cartoon or just different iterations and the Grimm fairy tale and all the stories that come with it."
And she noted the intense scrutiny she faced after landing such a big part.
She added, "But you don't particularly see people who look like me or are me playing roles like that. When it was announced, it was a huge thing that was trending on Twitter for days, because all of the people were angry."