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Melissa McCarthy says 'Little Mermaid' rehearsals are 'absolute blast'

Feb. 17 (UPI) -- Melissa McCarthy says rehearsals for The Little Mermaid have been an "absolute blast" thus far.

The 49-year-old actress discussed the upcoming film during Monday's episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

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McCarthy plays Ursula in The Little Mermaid, a live-action remake of Disney's 1989 animated film of the same name. The movie is directed by Rob Marshall and stars Halle Bailey as the title character, Ariel.

"I play Ursula, the sea witch. It is so fun," McCarthy said. "We're just in rehearsals. It's been an absolute blast."

"Stepping into the world of Rob Marshall, it's like a fever dream," she added. "I just went to London for a week, I was like, 'I don't get to go to dance camp for a week.' All day he's like, 'Do you want to slide down this 40-foot clam shell?' I'm like, 'Yes! Of course I do. What are you, crazy?' It's been wildly creative."

Marshall is known for directing such films as Chicago, Into the Woods and Mary Poppins Returns. He praised Bailey, an actress known for A Wrinkle in Time and Grown-ish, following her casting in July.

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"After an extensive search, it was abundantly clear that Halle possesses that rare combination of spirit, heart, youth, innocence and substance -- plus a glorious singing voice -- all intrinsic qualities necessary to play this iconic role," Marshall said.

The Little Mermaid co-stars Jonah Hauer-King as Prince Eric, with Awkwafina as the voice of Scuttle, Jacob Tremblay as the voice of Flounder and Daveed Diggs as the voice of Sebastian. Javier Bardem will reportedly play King Triton.

On Ellen, McCarthy and fellow guest Macey Hensley played a game of "Hail to the Blank" where they guessed facts about U.S. presidents.

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