Harry Styles’ desire for “darker” roles reportedly stopped him from becoming Disney royalty.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly for a piece published Tuesday, filmmaker Rob Marshall said that the “Watermelon Sugar” singer was an early choice for the part of Prince Eric in “The Little Mermaid,” but that Styles ended up passing on the live-action family film to pursue more dramatic projects.
“We met with him. He was lovely. What a wonderful guy,” Marshall said. “But at the end of the day, he really felt like he wanted to go off and do the movies that he ended up doing, which were sort of darker.”
Another British actor, Jonah Hauer-King, was eventually cast as the prince in the highly anticipated remake, which is set to come out May 26. The film also features Halle Bailey as Ariel, Melissa McCarthy as Ursula and Javier Bardem as King Triton.
Speaking to The Face in 2019, Styles discussed his decision to pass on “The Little Mermaid.” At the time, he told the magazine that he wanted to “focus on [music] ... for a while.”
Still, the One Direction alum said he’d be watching the film, adding that “everyone involved in it was amazing, so I think it’s going to be great.”
In the meantime, the “As It Was” crooner has taken a number of serious roles, appearing in the gay period drama “My Policeman” and the psychological thriller “Don’t Worry Darling,” both released in 2022.
While working on “Don’t Worry Darling,” Styles became embroiled in some serious off-screen drama.
His romance with director Olivia Wilde made headlines following her split with Jason Sudeikis, the father of her two children.
Styles and Wilde dated for two years, but media reports revealed in November 2022 that they were “taking a break” from one another.