Is Ursula Related to Ariel? How are They Related?
by Abinaya | Updated May 27, 2023
Who is Ursula?
Ursula is a fictional character who serves as the primary antagonist in Disney's 28th animated film, The Little Mermaid (1989). Voiced by American actress Pat Carroll, Ursula is a villainous sea witch who presents Ariel, a mermaid princess, with a temporary opportunity to transform into a human in order to win the love of Prince Eric within three days. However, Ursula's true intention is to hinder Ariel's chances and ultimately seize King Triton's position as ruler of the oceans.
Created by directors and screenwriters Ron Clements and John Musker, Ursula is inspired by the sea witch character from Hans Christian Andersen's 1837 fairy tale "The Little Mermaid." In the film, her role was expanded significantly to become a more prominent and formidable villain. Casting Ursula proved to be a challenge for Disney, with various sought-after television actresses vying for the role.
Clements and Musker had Bea Arthur in mind, while lyricist Howard Ashman preferred soap opera star Joan Collins. However, both actresses declined the part. Ashman then selected Broadway actress Elaine Stritch, but disagreements arose between Stritch and the directors regarding Ursula's signature song, "Poor Unfortunate Souls." Eventually, Pat Carroll was chosen to replace Stritch after Ashman dismissed her. Carroll modified her own voice to portray Ursula and drew inspiration from a blend of Shakespearean actresses and car salespeople.
Is Ursula Related to Ariel?
In the original '80s animated film, Ursula and Ariel had a transactional relationship, where Ursula offered to help Ariel become human in exchange for her own ulterior motives of obtaining King Triton's powers. Similarly, in the live-action adaptation, Ursula's intentions remained somewhat the same, but with certain intriguing modifications.
In the live-action adaptation, it was unveiled that Ursula is actually Ariel's aunt, the younger sister of King Triton. Due to undisclosed reasons, the sea witch was banished from Atlantica. Ariel's father warned her that Ursula would "cause trouble between mermaids and humans." Ursula harbored resentment towards her brother for seemingly attaining everything he desired while she was left with nothing. Consequently, she manipulates her niece as a pawn to acquire the trident's powers and claim the throne for herself.
Who is Ariel?
Ariel is a fictional character who appears in Disney's 28th animated film, The Little Mermaid (1989). Voiced by Jodi Benson in all official animated appearances and merchandise, Ariel is the fourth Disney Princess and the youngest daughter of King Triton and Queen Athena, rulers of the underwater kingdom of Atlantica. Known for her rebellious nature, Ariel yearns to explore the human world in the first film.
She eventually marries Prince Eric, whom she saved from a shipwreck, and they have a daughter named Melody. Ariel holds the distinction of being the first Disney Princess developed during the Disney Renaissance period. Although Ariel is based on the titular character in Hans Christian Andersen's 1837 fairy tale "The Little Mermaid," the film adaptation crafted her into a distinct personality.
Critics have had varying opinions about Ariel. Some publications, like Time, criticize her for being overly devoted to Eric, while others, such as Empire, praise her for her rebellious nature, which sets her apart from previous Disney Princesses.
Ariel Little Mermaid 2023
The highly anticipated live-action remake of The Little Mermaid made its debut on May 26, 2023, under the direction of Rob Marshall. The film boasts an impressive cast, with Halle Bailey portraying the iconic role of Ariel, Jonah Hauer-King as Prince Eric, Melissa McCarthy as the formidable Ursula, Javier Bardem as King Triton, and Daveed Diggs lending his talents to the lovable crab Sebastian.
Upon release, the film garnered mixed reviews from critics, as some praised the outstanding performances and captivating music, while others expressed criticism towards the visual effects and alterations made to the original source material. Despite the varying reception, the film proved to be a resounding success at the box office, amassing a staggering gross of over $1.3 billion worldwide.
Ursula Little Mermaid 2023
Ursula, the estranged sister of King Triton, had been banished from Atlantica following a failed coup against Triton's rule. Residing in an underwater cave, she wielded her magical abilities to exert control over sea creatures. Driven by jealousy towards Triton's power, she deceived Ariel into a pact, promising her the transformation into a human with legs and a human voice.
However, Ursula had ulterior motives and seized Ariel's voice for herself. With the assistance of Flounder and Sebastian, Ariel managed to retrieve her voice. Together with Prince Eric, they triumphed over Ursula, restoring Triton's authority. Ultimately, Ursula met her demise as her own magic turned against her.
Is Ursula Related to Ariel - FAQs
In the live-action adaptation, Ursula is revealed to be Ariel's aunt, the younger sister of King Triton, driven by resentment and a desire to claim the throne for herself.
Ariel is the youngest daughter of King Triton and Queen Athena, a rebellious mermaid princess who longs to explore the human world and eventually marries Prince Eric.
The live-action remake of The Little Mermaid was released on May 26, 2023, directed by Rob Marshall, and featured a star-studded cast.
The live-action remake received mixed reviews from critics, with some praising the performances and music while others criticized the visual effects and changes to the source material.
The live-action remake of The Little Mermaid grossed over $1.3 billion worldwide, establishing itself as a box office success.