Disney’s decision to cast Asian actors in the lead roles for the upcoming live-action adaptation of Mulan has been met with favorable reaction from fans.
However, recent developments have caused major concerns among those who have been hoping to listen to the songs or see their favorite characters from the Disney animated classic.
First, it was reported that there wouldn’t be any songs in the movie. And fans were torn:
Mulan is the literally the best Disney princess, she saved the whole of China and she doesn’t even get music in her own film pic.twitter.com/McQYwDUEhK
— ㅤ (@MALEKALYCIA) March 18, 2017
disney’s not keeping the songs in the mulan movie but kept it in beauty and beast and made us listen to emma’s struggle autotune vocals??? pic.twitter.com/hZFPvkFxB6
— electra (@biselinakyle) March 18, 2017
— Ryan William (@RyWilliamCM) March 19, 2017
you can’t have #Mulan without I’ll make a man out of you
— Dave Holt (@daveofftheradio) March 19, 2017
@ the mulan remake without songs pic.twitter.com/905YVbQE6j
— mandy ✨ (@anglashamyqueen) March 18, 2017
“Beauty and the Beast” used the original tracks and even added three new ones. The new Aladdin film will reportedly be using the original beloved scores. Of course, Disney could still have a change of heart. Aladdin wasn’t really going to feature any music, but the studio eventually decided to do so during development.
The news came that Captain Li Shang, Mulan’s original love interest from the 1998 cartoon, will be replaced by a new character who acts as the heroine’s rival. The movie’s casting call showing the change recently circulated on social media and has sparked an immediate reaction from fans.
— Jo-Anne Rowney (@JoAnne_Rowney) March 19, 2017
— Mrs.Cavill ♥︎ℳ (@Melodious87) March 19, 2017
— IZ REM (@IZRem27) March 19, 2017
👏🏾How 👏🏾do 👏🏾you 👏🏾make 👏🏾Mulan 👏🏾without 👏🏾Li 👏🏾Shang 👏🏾 and 👏🏾make👏🏾 a 👏🏾man 👏🏾out 👏🏾of 👏🏾you??? pic.twitter.com/NuMVgvMvi4
— Whit (@I_Slayy) March 19, 2017
lemme get this straight, there’s gonna be no songs, General Li Shang is being replaced with a new character…
is this even Mulan anymore?! pic.twitter.com/e5uShnsjMR
— bedtime story heaux (@90spideypool) March 19, 2017
Some netizens have now wondered if the outrage over the supposed “gay moment” in “Beauty and the Beast” had something to do with the major change in characters. Many have expressed that removing any subtext of gay or bisexual characters would help avoid any future controversies.
Hope the reason why the legend Captain Li Shang is being REPLACED w/ a new character in the live-action Mulan isn’t to rid bisexual claims pic.twitter.com/gAZkRMdCrl
— Nerdy Asians (@NerdyAsians) March 19, 2017
There has been some internet discussion that the handsome captain was actually Disney’s first bisexual major character. Fan theories have long suggested that Shang has developed a romantic interest in Mulan’s male alter ego Ping. According to those who purport to such claims, Disney has hinted the bisexual subtext in the character.
I would just like to say that D*sney removing the bisexual context of Mulan for the live action remake is a result of Trumps America
— black history heaux (@localblactivist) March 19, 2017
im mad that the new character hates mulan until he finds out she’s a woman. SHANG LOVED HER WHEN SHE WAS PING AND MULAN
— linda (@khmurk) March 20, 2017
me getting hyped for the Mulan live action film vs me realizing how bad disney is screwing it pic.twitter.com/DrpDwiEGxG
— deer slayers! (@oakwaldforest) March 20, 2017
Whatever the reason for the changes, it is pretty evident that the new Mulan movie is being geared to be presented in a much more serious tone than the animated version. But will the changes make way for a more tightly written script with less romance and more badass Mulan moments?
As the project is in its very early stages, it is premature to gauge whether the changes would make for a weaker film or a more epic experience.
In an interview with Screencrush, New Zealand director Niki Caro has hinted of her aims for the movie being the latter: “I haven’t started yet so I can’t give you any real detail. But the budget and the location and the story is offering such scope to me for [an] incredible, muscular piece of girly martial arts extravaganza in China. And I can’t wait.”
The new Mulan is set for release on November 2, 2018.