Moments ago, Walt Disney Studios gave fans their first look at Yifei Liu as Hua Mulan. The actress was chosen to bring the beloved heroine to life after a year-long global casting search. The live-action adaptation of the 1998 animated feature began production today, and it will shoot on locations in China and New Zealand. Mulan will premiere in theaters March 27, 2020.
(The film’s leading lady is also known as Crystal Liu.)
Additional cast members include Utkarsh Ambudkar, Yoson An, Rosalind Cheng Pei-Pei, Chum Ehelepola, Jason Scott Lee, Nelson Lee, Gong Li, Jet Li, Tzi Ma, Donnie Yen and Ron Yuan. The movie is directed by Niki Caro, from a screenplay by Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver and Elizabeth Martin and Lauren Hynek, based on the classic narrative poem The Ballad of Mulan. Chris Bender, Jason T. Reed and Jake Weiner are producing the live-action adaptation, while Tim Coddington, Bill Kong and Barrie M. Osborn are executive producing the project.
“Mulan is the epic adventure of a fearless young woman who masquerades as a man in order to fight Northern Invaders attacking China. The eldest daughter of an honored warrior, Hua Mulan is spirited, determined and quick on her feet,” the film studio says. “When the emperor issues a decree that one man per family must serve in the Imperial Army, she steps in to take the place of her ailing father as Hua Jun, becoming one of China’s greatest warriors ever.”
The movie was originally set to open in theaters Nov. 2, 2018, but it was forced to delay the movie’s release date as casting directors searched for the perfect person to star in the title role.
In recent years, the studio has released live-action adaptations of animated classics Alice in Wonderland, Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, The Jungle Book and Sleeping Beauty, with Aladdin, Dumbo and more in the works. A Mary Poppins sequel will be released in December.