Actor, rapper and singer-songwriter Daveed Diggs will voice the character of Sebastian in Disney’s live-action remake of ‘The Little Mermaid’, which premiered on 26th May. This spring we’ve also been able to see him in Apple TV’s series ‘Extrapolations’. In one of Daveed’s next projects, he will voice the character of Spruce in the upcoming sequel and third installment in the ‘Trolls’ franchise, ‘Trolls Band Together’, which will be coming out later this year.
Daveed, you’ll be voicing the character of Sebastian in Disney’s live-action remake of ‘The Little Mermaid’. It is a live-action adaptation of Disney’s 1989 animated film, itself loosely based on the 1837 fairy tale. How does it differ from the original animated film?
It’s actually heavily based on the 1989 film. It’s got a few great updates from the original and of course now has the live action aspect, but it’s still the same story we all know and love.
What can we expect from this Disney’s highly anticipated live-action remake of ‘The Little Mermaid’?
To laugh and cry in equal measure. I didn’t get a chance to see the film until our LA premiere a few weeks ago and was blown away. The moment Halle came onto the screen as Ariel I just started crying. She is such a generational talent and we are so lucky that this adaptation was made at a time when Halle was the perfect age for the role. No one else could do what she has done in this film.
You’ve done a lot of voice roles in your career. How much harder is to portray a character only with your voice?
It’s the same. I just don’t have to get dressed up.
This spring, you’ve starred in Apple TV’s series ‘Extrapolations’ alongside Meryl Streep, Matthew Rhys, Sienna Miller, Kit Harrington and more. The series shows how the upcoming changes to our planet will affect love, faith, work and family on a personal and human scale. What is the most important message of this series for the audiences?
If we want to continue to have a planet to live on we should probably start taking better care of it. And that’s going to require all the world’s governments working together.
How did it feel winning a Tony Award for Best Actor?
It was alright. No but for real, my involvement with ‘Hamilton’ came about by me wanting to do a fun thing with friends and that’s continued to be my motto throughout my career. Anything else we get along the way is just cake.
Not only are you an actor, but also a rapper and singer-songwriter. Tell us more about your musical career.
I make a lot of music, most of which is with my band clipping. We’re working on a new album now, so stay tuned for more on that.
What inspires you in and about music?
I’ve been writting rap songs longer than I’ve been doing anything else. It’s easier to organize my thoughts musically sometimes than it is with prose.
Later in the year, you’ll be voicing the character of Spruce, one of Branch’s brothers and a member of BroZone, in the third installment in the ‘Trolls’ franchise, ‘Trolls Band Together’. What can you share about this upcoming computer-animated musical comedy film?
The music is going to have you dancing in the aisles.
When you are not filming or recording, how do you like to spend your free time?
Laying on a beach with a cocktail.
Talent: Daveed Diggs
Photographer: Nick Rasmussen
Stylist: John Tan
Styling assistant: Radmila Dolokhanova
Groomer: Colleen Dominique @ Exclusive Artists using Armani Beauty and IMAGE Skincare
Photography assistant: Dawn Lu & Mikey
Editor: Timi Letonja