Melissa McCarthy in Talks to Play Ursula in Live-Action 'Little Mermaid'
The actress is in talks to star in Disney's live-action remake of "The Little Mermaid" as the iconic villain Ursula, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Rob Marshall is directing the project, which is part of Disney's unending march to remake all of its animated classics into live-action films.
The 1989 original is considered the first to usher in what's called the "Disney Renaissance." The success of "The Little Mermaid" breathed life back into the company's animation division after a string of flops.
The film won two Academy Awards for Best Original Score and Best Original Song ("Under the Sea") by Alan Menken. For the live-action version, Menken will collaborate with Lin-Manuel Miranda on new music.
The remake has not yet cast the lead role of Ariel yet. McCarthy's casting comes as a bit of a surprise, as there were rumors that Lady Gaga was up for the role of Ursula.
Marshall told Moviefone that the live-action remake will be "massively challenging because of how to create a world underwater. Half of the movie is underwater and to create a world that actually comes to life in a way that's actor-friendly when you're shooting it."