Coming Soon: Mulan (2020)

Film Editor Lucy Lillystone lets us in on why upcoming film Mulan is a must watch.

Lucy Lillystone
31st January 2020
Image: IMDB
Anyone who knows me knows I'm not the biggest fan of Disney, nor of the live-action remakes. However, when I first heard the news, way back in 2015 that the legendary Chinese folktale, first made by the studio in 1998 - Mulan is getting a live-action remake, I could not contain my excitement. Who doesn't want a badass woman on our cinema screens?

Disney's upcoming live-action Mulan, set to come out on the 27 March, 2020 looks to be a jam-packed, action martial arts epic as it will follow its titular heroine in the middle of a historical war. Mulan tells the story of a young woman disguising herself as a male warrior to take on her father's place in battle in order to save him.

The decision to update the screenplay adds a sense of originality and uniqueness to the film.

Despite other live-action remakes, Mulan is taking a different route by changing a few elements of the story-line from the 1998 film. For example, the upcoming film will not have the heroine facing off against Shan Yu or falling in love with Li Shang. She instead will face a powerful witch and find love with a fellow soldier in her unit. The film will also add new elements such as a new Commander character, acting as Mulan's mentor. Personally, I think this is a well-made decision as rather than just remaking the same content with new actors and new sets, the decision to update the screenplay adds a sense of originality and uniqueness to the film that will most likely attract more audiences.

As for the director, Mulan is directed by New Zealand filmmaker Niki Caro who in the past has worked on Whale Rider, following the story of a young Maori girl who aspires to be the chief of her tribe and North Country that successfully got Oscar nominated for Charlize Theron and Frances McDormand's. Caro has also worked with Disney before and with female-centred stories and for that alone, I trust that she will do a good job in making this tale come alive in the best possible way for fans of the 1998 heroine.

A big part of the film will of course be the music, especially the catchy, memorable and fan-favourite "I'll Make a Man Out of You". Despite rumours that there was going to be no music at all, departing from live-action remakes such as Beauty and the Beast, Caro confirmed that: "The live-action is based on that inspirational Chinese ballad and on the animated Disney classic...for sure there will be music." Looking at the trailer, there was no indication what musical songs will be involved, but let's hope they will have some of the classics.

Acting wise, Chinese star Liu Yifei (also known as Crystal Liu) will be playing the bad-ass Hua Mulan. Previously starring in 2008's The Forbidden Kingdom, Yifei, in my opinion, is the perfect actress. She has the right amount of strength, beauty and intellect to embody this Disney princess and despite worries that Disney would whitewash the character, it seems that a lot of thought and research went into the casting. Since the trailer dropped, I am only further convinced of the brilliancy of the acting alongside the plot. I am definitely looking forward to seeing what this film entails. Please don't let me down Disney.

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AUTHOR: Lucy Lillystone
English Language and Literature graduate, writer and Film Editor 2019/20. Passionate about film, TV and books. 99.9% of my articles are me crying, emotional over my love for my favourite characters. Twitter: @lucylillystone_

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