Mena Massoud, the star of Disney’s live-action version of Aladdin, has received some backlash following the upcoming remake of The Little Mermaid starring Halle Bailey.
On Saturday, Massoud commented on a tweet discussing whether The Little Mermaid will cross the $1 billion box-office mark after projections set the Bailey-led film to have a higher than Aladdin for its first weekend in theaters. According to Massoud, the film won’t touch that milestone but would definitely get a sequel.
Massoud said that Aladdin, which came out in 2019 and also starred Will Smith as Mariner, was able to hit the milestone because fans repeatedly came back to the theaters to watch the film, which is something that he does not think will happen with Bailey’s The Little Mermaid.
“Our film was unique in that audiences went to watch it multiple times,” Massoud said. “It’s only the way we reached the billion-dollar mark with our opening. My guess is TLM doesn’t cross the billion mark but will undoubtedly get a sequel.”
Fans were not fond of the shade Massoud threw at The Little Mermaid. “Look, I liked him in Aladdin and felt bad that he couldn’t really springboard it to anything notable,” one fan responded. “But this is such an embarrassing and uncalled for tweet. What would compel one to say this?”
“Your film reached a billion but you’re still jobless… seems like you got other things to worry about,” one fan wrote.
“Damn. He should’ve apologized for his tweet instead of deleting his whole account. Like they say play stupid games, you win stupid prizes. Mena Massoud shouldn’t pin against POC lead Disney films. That’s just wrong,” another fan responded to Massoud’s response to the backlash.
The Little Mermaid hits theaters on May 26 and stars Halle Bailey, Melissa McCarthy, Jonah Hauer-King, Daveed Diggs and more.
Take a look at the trailer below: