Good news, everyone — following incredibly (and justifiably) angry reactions yesterday to a report claiming that Disney’s fast-tracked Mulan remake would feature a prominent white male leading role, a new report has emerged saying that the film will not feature that role at all. A post on the blog Angry Asian Man claimed to have read the full script, drawing attention to the original Legend of Mulan script Disney purchased. The anonymous writer found that Hua Mulan wasn’t the star of her own movie: Instead, the lead would be a white, 30-something European trader who pitches their lot in with the Chinese army because he’s in love with the titular character. The reaction was… suitably enraged.
It would have been a phenomenally poor idea, but happily it might not come to pass after all. Vulture, citing sources close to the production, claims that while the original script did feature such a role, it was purchased by Disney merely as a jumping-off point rather than the intended final product. Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver have been hired to work on the script, described as a merging of the 1998 animated classic and the ancient Chinese ballad, and Mulan’s love interest will indeed be Chinese. Vulture’s source concludes with the heartening news that “Mulan is and will always be the lead character in the story, and all primary roles, including the love interest, are Chinese.”
And thank God for that. Otherwise Disney would have had a veritable maelstrom on their hands.