In The Little Mermaid Live, a whole new cast is bringing the classic Disney movie to life, and that means fans are meeting some fresh faces in the ABC musical spectacle. One of those fresh faces is Graham Phillips, who plays Prince Eric on the show. If you're not already following Phillips, get ready to have a new heartthrob in your life.
The 26-year-old singer and actor joined the cast that includes Auli'i Cravalho, Queen Latifah, and John Stamos as they present a brand-new format of the live TV musical. The cast is performing songs from The Little Mermaid live, while the dialogue scenes will be the ones from the original 1989 animated film. Ahead of his performance, Phillips talked to Entertainment Weekly about his excitement for fans to experience The Little Mermaid in this new hybrid performance. He said:
It’s a new heightened way that’s a celebration of the original, but then the plot and all the scenes are carried forward by the original movie. Instead of competing with the nostalgia everyone has for the iconic film, we’re just using it. I was relieved to hear that because it would be a difficult challenge to try to compete with it.
While The Little Mermaid Live serves as an introduction for many to Phillios, some fans will already recognize the performer from his previous roles. In addition to a spot on The Good Wife, Phillips recently played Veronica's ex-boyfriend Nick St. Clair on Riverdale. He is also no stranger to the stage: As a kid, Phillips starred on Broadway in the musical 13, which is also where he met his ex-girlfriend, Ariana Grande. Even though they broke up years ago, the two have remained friends and have been seen hanging out as recently as this year.
The Little Mermaid Live will include songs from both the animated movie and the Broadway production, and Phillips said he has been happy to get the chance to fully explore Eric. "There’s a whole song, ‘Her Voice,’ where you finally get to hear why he’s obsessed with Ariel and what it feels like for him to not have love at first sight, but to have love at first sound," he told EW. "That is a super unique phenomenon that you brush over in the movie. You get a sense of how much her essence is bound with his soul with that song.”
If you want to see more of Phillips after The Little Mermaid Live, you can catch more of his talents soon, when he makes his directorial debut with the movie The Bygone. He also stars in the film, alongside his older brother Parker Phillips, and it'll be out on Nov. 12.
The Little Mermaid Live airs on Tuesday, Nov. 5, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.