The 1998 Disney animated film “Mulan” was something of a landmark moment for the studio’s decade-spanning “Animated Canon.” This was the first film to feature a female lead character that was undoubtedly an “action girl,” a concept what would be visited years later with the Pixar co-production “Brave.” Over two decades since its original release, Disney is preparing to roll out a live-action adaptation for “Mulan” in the vein of all their recent live movie remakes. While the actual premiere of the film is still a few months off, new promotional material has been trickling out, like this international poster.
Comic Book.com has it that Disney has just recently released a new promotional poster of “Mulan” for international audiences. In cinematic parlance that usually means a poster with visuals and text designed for the Asian movie markets, particularly Japan. Indeed, this “Mulan” poster has Japanese text for its blurb and credits. The top line heavily pushes the past live-action treatments of the House of Mouse’s animated classics such as “Beauty and the Beast” (2017) and “Aladdin” (2019). Now the majority of the poster is given to awesome (CGI-enhanced) vistas with a close-up of the heroine herself, played by Liu Yifei.
The first noticeable thing is that Liu as Mulan is garbed in the vibrant red dress that was prominent in the initial trailer for the movie released earlier this year. That was in the scenes where she shot arrows and fought in a melee with the invading Mongol warriors. She has her sword in her hand, but the reflection shows Mulan in her assumed male identity, here called Hua Jun (rather than Fa Ping from the animation). Images in the background include Mulan riding at the head of a group of horsemen, and what appears to be a phoenix, rumored to be the replacement spiritual guardian for the little dragon Mushu, voiced by Eddie Murphy.
Along with Liu Yifei, “Mulan” stars Donnie Yen, Yoson An, Gong Li and Jet Li as the Emperor of China, all under director Nicki Caro. The movie is scheduled to release in the US on March 27, although the international version features the Japanese premiere date of April 17 instead. The preview of this poster might hopefully take some of the sting off the recent controversy regarding actress Liu’s public support for the Hong Kong Police, which has been struggling with increasingly violent pro-democracy protesters for six months now. Her opinion has spurred efforts from Hong Kong to boycott “Mulan” when it arrives in Asia.
Image courtesy of Toonado