Styles had been in talks to play the part for about a month, but People said Tuesday he is no longer in negotiations with Disney. “While he is a fan of the project, he has respectfully declined the offer,” a rep told People.
On Tuesday, both AMC Theatres and Regal Cinemas inaccurately tweeted that Styles had been cast in the role. Both theater chains later deleted the tweets.
Halle Bailey is set to play the titular heroine in the movie musical, which re-imagines the 1989 cartoon classic. Jacob Tremblay and Awkwafina will co-star. ABC is also planning a separate live-action TV event of The Little Mermaid featuring Auli’i Cravalho, Queen Latifahand Shaggy.
Styles played a supporting role in the 2017 World War II picture Dunkirk.