Daveed Diggs is discussing the challenges that go along with playing Sebastian in the upcoming “Little Mermaid” live-action remake.
In a new interview with Collider, the Hamilton star revealed the lengths that he has gone to in order to prepare for the role.
“I worked harder on Sebastian probably than I have for any role in my life,” the 39-year-old admitted. “It’s tricky.”
Diggs explained how he tends “to say yes to things when I feel like I can do it, but I’m actually not sure I’m the smart choice or the person naturally who should be doing it. That’s true of Sebastian, for a lot of ways that are uncomfortable.”
He continued, “I’m not of Caribbean descent, doing that kind of work and trying to immerse myself. I’ve spent a lot of time in Trinidad and I went to Jamaica to research, and I did a lot of voice work with Chris Walker and with the late Tony Hall, to try to get the voice right. But more than the voice, the thing about a dialect is that everybody’s voice is actually very different, so consistency is really more important than accuracy. Your speech pattern is based on culture, and that was the thing I didn’t wanna let down.”
Diggs will star alongside Halle Bailey, Melissa McCarthy, Javier Bardem, Jacob Tremblay and Awkwafina in the hotly anticipated Disney film.
The Broadway actor also spoke about recording the new tracks that will feature in the movie.
“[It’s] pretty wild. You get to hear a new song before it comes out and it’s amazing, and then you hear the performance of it by an actor you might not expect to be able to do that and that’s also amazing,” he said. “There are so many cool surprises that I know and I’m just sitting on.”