Disney, riding the success of their live-action “Cinderella” film in March, which debuted to No.1 and over $330 million.
Now, they’re going to live-action a “Mulan” film to complement the animated 1998 venture.
“Mulan” has long been held as one of the most quotable, successful Disney films, and one of the few “princess” films that isn’t actually about a princess. Hua Mulan was a real person in Northern Wei dynasty China (386CE to 534CE).
The story comes from an ancient poem “The Ballad of Mulan,” and describes a young woman who disguised herself as a man to take her father’s place in the army to defend their country from the nomadic invaders. According to legend, she fought for 12 years, earning 12 ranks. Then – and this happens in the Disney version as well – she turns down a title to return to a quiet life with her family.
It should be interesting to see how much of the legend Disney will follow.
They purchased a script from writing duo Elizabeth Martin and Lauren Hynek, with Chris Bender and J.C. Spink attached to produce. No release date or casting has been announced yet, but much of twitter has speculated as to whom they will hire. One fan favorite is “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” star Ming-Na Wen, the original voice actress of Mulan.
She also knows kung fu, so, you know, that’s a plus.
If we’re talking “Mulan” in the same vein as “Cinderella,” we can expect millions of dollars poured into creating an authentic Chinese vibe, with the red-and-gold architecture, silk robes, a CGI Mushu (come on, how could they not include Mushu) and most importantly, Asian actors.
This film has the potential to be a significant boost to the Asian acting community, who are not often considered for lead roles. The hope is that Disney will cast people of Chinese descent — all Asians are not the same, and casting a Japanese or Korean person wil be seen as a high cultural insult.
Most are approaching this news with cautious excitement. Some are not huge fans of the re-vamping classic Disney trend – they’re also working on “Beauty and the Beast,” an “Alice in Wonderland” sequel, a new “Jungle Book” and a live-action Dumbo by Tim Burton.
But “Maleficent” was wonderful, and so was “Cinderella.”
Cautious excitement it is.
Who will they cast? How will this project progress? Only time will tell, but this is definitely a film to put on the watch list.
And if this news has stirred your interest, the animated “Mulan” is on Netflix. Here’s to hoping the new one will bring honor to us all.