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Halle Bailey as Ariel in The Little Mermaid
Image via Walt Disney Studios

Latest Disney News: ‘The Little Mermaid’ lands wobbly opening weekend projections while ‘Peter Pan & Wendy’ defies criticism by flying to the top of streaming

And sadly, none of this bodes well for 'Lilo & Stitch.'

There’s nothing like a calm weekend to steady the waters upon which Disney coasts into the proverbially splendid ocean. Oh wait, it wasn’t calm… 

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Peter Pan & Wendy underwent its opening weekend on Disney Plus and as hinted last Friday, the debut did not go over well. Meanwhile, The Little Mermaid received its first official opening weekend box office projections, and while the numbers aren’t bad, they’re not spectacular. Of course, the less-than-spectacular reception doesn’t bode well for Lilo & Stitch since The Little Mermaid is arguably one of Disney’s most popular IPs. Once again, Disney’s efforts to remake, reimagine, and reboot popular classics are proving to be anything but magical.  

Early box office predictions suggest The Little Mermaid’s sea legs will be fine at best, and wobbly at worst

the little mermaid
Image via Disney

Since it was announced that Halle Bailey would star as Ariel in The Little Mermaid, the Disney live-action remake has been plagued by racists and trolls. Unfortunately for Disney, those racists and trolls don’t appear eager to buy tickets to the movie, as early box office predictions suggest The Little Mermaid will rake in somewhere between $70 million to $90 million. Again, these aren’t bad numbers. They are just… fine. At least they are better than the live-action Aladdin anyway. 

Peter Pan & Wendy soars to Neverland even though critics wish it had never-landed on Disney Plus 

Ever Gabo Anderson as Wendy in Peter Pan & Wendy
Image via Disney Plus

Like The Little Mermaid’s projected box office numbers, Peter Pan & Wendy is aggressively… fine. However, despite critics calling it a frame-by-frame rehash of a story we already know, the film has somehow soared to #1 on the streaming charts. It’s hardly ever clear when a movie is getting review bombed or when it is actually a bomb, but the hate Peter Pan & Wendy has received is suspicious, to say the least. Still, against all odds, (or in favor of them), the movie flew to the very top of the charts in 46 countries, so take that critics. 

Peter Pan & Wendy plus The Little Mermaid plus racist trolls equals a potentially fatal formula for the live-action Lilo & Stitch

Image via Walt Disney Pictures

Peter Pan & Wendy and The Little Mermaid both drew the ire of racist Disney purists for casting people of color in roles that were previously inhabited by white actors. While the live-action Lilo & Stitch doesn’t have the same exact problem, it does have a whitewashing problem, at least according to fans. Not to mention the racist backlash that resulted in Kahiau Machado being fired for using the N-word on social media and then being replaced by Kaipot Dudoit. And that’s not even factoring in Disney’s VFX problem, which both The Little Mermaid and Lilo & Stitch hinder upon… So, yeah, it is going to be an uphill battle for our favorite little blue alien.

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Cody Raschella
Cody Raschella is a Staff Editor who has been with WGTC since 2021. He is a closeted Swiftie (shh), a proud ‘Drag Race’ fan (yas), and a hopeless optimist (he still has faith in the MCU). His passion for writing has carried him across various mediums including journalism, copywriting, and creative writing, the latter of which has been recognized by Writer’s Digest. He received his bachelor's degree from California State University, Northridge.