Halle Bailey Delivers Emotional Speech About Halo at Essence Awards – Hollywood Life

Halle Bailey at the 2024 Essence Black Women Awards

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Image Credit: Robin L Marshall/Getty Images for ESSENCE

Halle Bailey delivered a moving speech at the Essence Black Women in Hollywood Awards. While being honored for her work in film, the 23-year-old Little Mermaid star pointed out that she had no plans to ever “expose” her baby boy, Halo, to the world.

“There was no way in hell I was going to share the biggest joy of my world with anyone,” Halle said on stage, according to several social media videos taken at the event. “Halo was my gift, is the greatest blessing and I had no obligation to expose him, me or my family to that unyielding spotlight.”

Halle went on to note that the current “state of the world, and men trying to force their will on women’s bodies, no one on social media was going to tell me what to share.”

“Remember when Zion David Marley, who came from a queen named Lauryn Hill, entered the world? Do you remember how private Beyoncé was about her pregnancy?” Halle asked the audience, before adding, “Every woman in the world has the right to choose what to do with their bodies.”

The Color Purple actress also rehashed her experience stepping into the role as Disney’s Ariel. Since the animated character is white, Halle described the cruel criticism she faced for playing the mermaid as a Black woman.

“During one of my proudest moments being cast as Ariel, that’s when I discovered two things about being Black in Hollywood,” she said. “It can be unfair and it can expose you to criticism just for being you. Not because you’re a bad actor or you’ve given a poor performance, but just because you look like you do.”

Halle’s speech was met with thunderous applause and cheers. Her remarks come two months after she announced that she and boyfriend DDG had welcomed Halo to the world at the end of 2023.

“Even though we’re a few days into the new year, the greatest thing that 2023 could have done for me, was bring me my son,” Halle captioned an Instagram post on January 6. “Welcome to the world my halo, the world is desperate to know you.”

Her revelation affirmed pregnancy rumors that circulated about Halle last year. At the time, social media bullies incessantly asked her whether or not she was pregnant.

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