Disney casts Chinese actress to play the lead the role of “Hua Mulan” in the film version of the acclaimed 1998 cartoon.
Disney Casts Chinese Actress To Lead Mulan Role
China was rejoicing after one of its favorite actresses landed the role of Mulan in an upcoming Disney movie after Hollywood had been accused of ‘whitewashing’ Chinese characters.
Liu Yifei is to play the lead role in the adaptation of the 1998 cartoon which told the tale of Hua Mulan, a legendary female warrior from ancient China.
The decision to cast Ms. Liu in the role comes after several Hollywood movies were lambasted in China for casting Caucasian Western actors in Asian roles.
Thousands signed a petition calling for an Asian actress to be chosen for the new Mulan movie, and many in China were celebrating after Disney announced Ms. Liu, aged 30, had landed the role on Thursday.
“This is a huge progress and great thing,” said Tan Fei, a well-known film commentator in China.
“This means the West has treated the Chinese market and Chinese actors in a positive way,” he told The Telegraph.
“Mulan - a Chinese role - will be played by a Chinese person, even though it had always been played by people from the West before.
“And what is more important is that previously Chinese actors in Western movies played non-essential roles, but this time Liu will play the leading role.”
The live-action version of Mulan is expected to be a hit in China, where the story is well known.
Hua Mulan disguises herself as a man in order to sign up for the army, replacing her sick father.