Speaking at Florida Supercon on Saturday, Benson said: "The most important thing is to tell the story. And we have, as a family, we have raised our children, and for ourselves, that we don’t see anything that’s different on the outside.
“I think that the spirit of a character is what really matters," she continued (via Comic Book). "What you bring to the table in a character as far as their heart, and their spirit, is what really counts. And the outside package — cause let’s face it, I’m really, really old — and so when I’m singing ‘Part of Your World,’ if you were to judge me on the way that I look on the outside, it might change the way that you interpret the song.
"But if you close your eyes, you can still hear the spirit of Ariel.”
The 57-year-old actress and singer -- best recognized for voicing Ariel in the 1989 animated classic -- went on to say that to her “the most important thing for a film is to be able to tell a story.”
“We need to be storytellers. And no matter what we look like on the outside, no matter our race, our nation, the color of our skin, our dialect, whether I’m tall or thin, whether I’m overweight or underweight, or my hair is whatever color, we really need to tell the story,” noted Benson, who was met with applause.
“And that’s what we want to do, we want to make a connection to the audience," she added. "So I know for Disney that they have the heart of storytelling, that’s really what they’re trying to do. They want to communicate with all of us in the audience so that we can fall in love with the film again."
Last week, it was revealed that the forthcoming live-action adaptation found its lead performer in Bailey, who is widely known as half of the R&B duo Chloe x Halle.
According to Variety, sources said that the 19-year-old performer had been a front-runner for the role "from the beginning."
"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,” the film's director, Rob Marshall, told the outlet in a statement on Wednesday.
"The Little Mermaid" is set for release in 2020, with Bailey starring alongside previously-announced stars Awkwafina as Scuttle and Jacob Tremblay as Flounder.
Fox News' Jeremy Nifras contributed to this report.