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Who Would You Cast as Mulan

Jamie Chung as Mulan
Jamie Chung portrays Mulan in Once Upon a Time

By Ed Diokno

The Disney Studio is launching a worldwide casting search for a Chinese actress to play the legendary female heroine Mulan.

The news that the studio is turning its 1998 animated hit into a live-action title comes after such successes as Maleficent, The Jungle Book and Cinderella, among other titles. And Disney is currently gearing up for the release of the live-action Beauty and the Beast, which opens March 17 and is expected to be one of the top-grossing titles of 2017.

Like the 1998 animated film, Mulan is based on the Chinese legend of Hua Mulan, the daughter of an aged warrior who disguises herself as a man in order to take her father’s place in the army and go to war. Aided by her trusted dragon, Mushu, she becomes a skilled warrior and one of the country’s greatest heroines.

The studio also announced that Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver who teamed for Jurassic World, were brought in to rewrite a spec script for Mulan that Disney bought in 2015.

The Disney team sees the 1998 animated film as a jumping-off point for a more nuanced and elaborate adaptation, combining the legendary Chinese ballad and the animated motion picture.

A director for Mulan hasn’t been selected yet.Whoever gets the plum role will have to be athletic or a dancer to convincingly perform the fight scenes in the upcoming movie. The movie could be a launching pad for a big career as one of the most recognizable Asian American actresses in Hollywood.

There are plenty candidates from the kick-ass roles played by Asian Americans in the movies and on television. Think Ming-Na Wen or Chloe Bennett from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Maggie Q from Nikita and Designated Survivor. Zhang Ziyi had some great fight scenes in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. But there could just as easily be a complete unknown. There are plenty of AAPI actresses who would love to win what could be a role of a lifetime.


Who would you cast in the Mulan role?



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