Disney won’t be slowing down with these live-action redos anytime soon.
The first trailer has been released for the studio’s new take on Mulan, which they took to the big screen in animated form in 1998. Based on the narrative poem “The Ballad of Mulan,” the film follows the eldest daughter of an honoured warrior in a time when the Emperor of China demands that one man per family must join the army to fight Northern invaders. Mulan decides to disguise herself as a man and take her ailing father’s place.
Directing this one is New Zealand filmmaker Niki Caro, whose credits include Whale Rider, North Country and The Zookeeper’s Wife. It’s a teaser trailer, so we don’t get a look at much of the plot or the extended cast (which includes Jason Scott Lee, Gong Li, Yoson An and Jet Li), but it does look like a more serious type of period “epic” than kiddie Disney fare. It’s the type of story that could make for a strong live-action iteration, and one that doesn’t need to follow the animated film much – or at all – to work well. Fingers crossed for what’s in store here.
Mulan will be arriving in Australia on March 26 and hits the US on March 27, 2020.
Official synopsis for Mulan:
When the Emperor of China issues a decree that one man per family must serve in the Imperial Army to defend the country from Northern invaders, Hua Mulan, the eldest daughter of an honored warrior, steps in to take the place of her ailing father. Masquerading as a man, Hua Jun, she is tested every step of the way and must harness her inner-strength and embrace her true potential. It is an epic journey that will transform her into an honored warrior and earn her the respect of a grateful nation…and a proud father.
“Mulan” features a celebrated international cast that includes: Yifei Liu as Mulan; Donnie Yen as Commander Tung; Jason Scott Lee as Böri Khan; Yoson An as Cheng Honghui; with Gong Li as Xianniang and Jet Li as the Emperor. The film is directed by Niki Caro from a screenplay by Rick Jaffa & Amanda Silver and Elizabeth Martin & Lauren Hynek based on the narrative poem “The Ballad of Mulan.”