24. This 1989 classic set off what is widely known as the Disney Renaissance. On the heels of Oliver & Company, The Black Cauldron and several live-action films in the Herbie franchise, the success of Ariel and co. was followed by extremely well-received ’90s fare: Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Lion King, Toy Story…
25. Give the opening scene with King Triton a rewatch: Eagle-eyed viewers (or, you know, those of us with the ability to press pause) can spot Mickey Mouse, Goofy and Donald Duck in the underwater crowd, continuing the studio’s popular tradition of giving nods to other members of its vast oeuvre.
26. Color was key for the ocean-set picture. According to the official Walt Disney Company blog, Ariel’s red locks were chosen to help differentiate her from Daryl Hannah‘s blonde mermaid in 1994’s Splash and to complement the blue-green of her fin, a hue specially mixed by the Disney paint lab and named Ariel.
27. As for her facial features, those were inspired by then-Who’s the Boss? star Alyssa Milano. “I didn’t know that when it was going on,” the actress told Wendy Williams in 2013. “But they asked me to host The Making of The Little Mermaid and it came there that the drawing and likeness of The Little Mermaid was based on pictures of me from when I was younger, which is so cool!”