There is a story that when the film came out, Ron Clements received a letter from a New Jersey State Trooper saying that, after seeing the movie and being driven to tears by it, called his daughter to reconcile their own relationship, just as Ariel and Triton did.
Master animator Glen Keane, who was the lead artist for Ariel, once told a story that he wasn't really proud of having animated her reaching up to the surface towards the camera on the last chorus of "Part Of Your World," feeling it was a little too cheesy, but he left it in to meet the deadline. Ten years later, a young woman told him that, as a little girl, she'd always wanted to reach forward, take Ariel's arm and help her out of the water during that scene. He's been deeply proud of it ever since.
To celebrate the movie's 30th anniversary, the Disney Princess official YouTube channel released this video, showing how much the movie has been loved, inspired and continues to warm hearts within different generations, genders and races of all ages. Special mention goes to the boy in one of the scenes in the video having the same Ariel outfit as a girl next to him and another boy reading out one of the movie's books to his little sister, who loves the room he and his mother decorated for her.