The first trailer for the Mulan live-action movie has finally landed, and it features wire-fu battling, lots of talk about doing right by one's family, and zero little red dragons. It’s our first look at the next addition to Disney's expansive line of cartoon live-action remakes, and while it's faithful to the original story, it's also aware of the two decades of cinematic martial arts action that have come out of China since then.
I haven't seen Mulan since I was eight, admittedly, but I don't remember quite this much slow-motion, gravity-defying fight choreography. I'm not complaining - it's a great idea for Disney to use these live-action remakes as a way to further celebrate what makes each story distinct (and wire-fu is always fun). Here's the full synopsis from Disney.
"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.'"
The live-action remake of Mulan will hit theaters in spring 2020, which still leaves plenty of time for Disney to surprise us with a clutch Mushu reveal. The only question is whether they should bring Eddie Murphy back or just let Will Smith take over for that one too.
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