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Peter T Chattaway

Mulan

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Links to our threads on Enchanted (2007), Enchanted 2 (in development), Alice in Wonderland (2010), The Sorcerer's Apprentice (2010), Maleficent (2014), Cinderella (2015), The Jungle Book (2016), Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass (2016), Beauty and the Beast (2017), Cruella (in development) and Dumbo (in development). We don't seem to have any threads on 101 Dalmatians (1996) or 102 Dalmatians (2000). Has Disney made any *other* live-action films based on their cartoons?

 

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De Bont to direct Zhang in ‘Mulan’
BEIJING – Hollywood hitmaker Jan de Bont has signed up to direct Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi in an independently-produced, English-language co-production of the classic tale of Hua Mulan, the legendary young heroine soldier who joins an all-male army.
“Mulan” is set to start shooting this fall outside Shanghai, where de Bont, the director of “Speed,” “Twister” and “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider” will attempt to bring romance, action and drama to screenwriter John Blickstead’s re-creation of the Chinese Joan of Arc story that was first described in a 6th century poem. . . .
Hollywood Reporter, September 4

Jan de Bont to direct 'Mulan'
BEIJING -- Action helmer Jan de Bont has signed up to direct Chinese thesp Zhang Ziyi in a new English-language, $35 million live-action version of the folk story "Mulan," which its makers hope will wow auds both in China and beyond.
Zhang will also co-produce the indie project, alongside Beaver Kwei and Ling Lucas, who collaborated with her on her successful romantic comedy "Sophie's Revenge" last year. Also involved are Movie Plus Prods. of Canada, Blighty's Global Film Finance, Beijing-based Bona Intl. Film Group and Salon Intl. Media Fund Pictures. . . .
"Mulan," which is a bit like "Robin Hood" crossed with "Maid of Orleans," was made famous worldwide by the 1998 Disney animation, and there was another live-action version by Hong Kong helmer Jingle Ma last year. The 6th century text is a key element of Chinese folklore. . . .
Variety, September 8

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Coincidentally (or not?), the Guardian's 'Reel history' series just posted an item on the Disney film, giving it a B+ for entertainment value but an E for history.

Edited by Peter T Chattaway

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I am a bit shocked that a movie with a talking dragon would get knocked for historical accuracy. I wonder how Dragonheart fared? ;)

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Hmm. Zhang is 31 now. But the way she looks, she can probably play... what... 17?

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Different version, but I assume the above film never got made (though there was a 2009 movie starring Zhao Wei and directed by Jingle Ma; Zhang Ziyi, according to Wikipedia, was passed over for the role of Mulan in that film)

 

The Hollywood Reporter: Disney Developing Live-Action 'Mulan' (Exclusive)

 

On the heels of the magical success of Disney's live-action Cinderella, the studio is eyeing another live-action retelling: Mulan.
 
Disney bought a script by writing team Elizabeth Martin and Lauren Hynek that centers on the Chinese legend of Hua Mulan, the female warrior who was the main character in Disney's 1998 animated film.
 
Chris Bender and J.C. Spink (We're the Millers) are producing the new project.
 
I said it on Facebook a month or so back and I'll say it more strongly here: while it seriously looks like this is a new level of creative bankruptcy on Disney's part, this trend of adapting popular animated movies as live-action films is simply an extension of their previous habit of making everything into a Broadway musical.
Edited by NBooth

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On 3/30/2015 at 2:24 PM, NBooth said:

I said it on Facebook a month or so back and I'll say it more strongly here: while it seriously looks like this is a new level of creative bankruptcy on Disney's part, this trend of adapting popular animated movies as live-action films is simply an extension of their previous habit of making everything into a Broadway musical.

Also: Disney has very rarely worked with original source material in the first place. Disney filmmakers in the 1930s and Disney filmmakers in the 2010s are more or less doing the same thing: Adapted stories they grew up with for new audiences.

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