Singer and actress Halle Bailey finally broke her silence regarding the backlash she faced since being cast as Ariel in the upcoming live-action version of ‘The Little Mermaid’.

While many were happy about the change in how the character looked since the announcement was made three years ago, others weren’t so thrilled, tweeting their anger over the casting of a black actor through the hashtag #notmyariel.

The Danish character is commonly known to have blue eyes, white skin and bright red hair.

Halle has since revealed in a recent Variety Magazine interview that she has gotten a lot of racist comments regarding her new role and that she tried not to “pay attention to the negativity”, but it really hurt her.

She admitted that she relied on the support of her grandparents, who reminded her of how many black girls she has inspired by taking on the new role.

It was an inspiring and beautiful thing to hear their words of encouragement, telling me, you don’t understand what this is doing for us, for our community, for all the little Black and brown girls who are going to see themselves in you”.

She also thought about what her own experience would have been like had she grown up seeing a person of color in that role. “What that would have done for me, how that would have changed my confidence, my belief in myself, everything,” Halle said. “Things that seem so small to everyone else, it’s so big to us.”

Bailey’s casting made it the first time Disney had chosen a woman of color to play a traditionally white princess.