Daily Drip

“Mulan” Set for Disney+ Release in September


Disney’s much-delayed live-action remake of Mulan looks to be finally set for release — but not quite in the way it was originally intended. The controversial movie is due to launch on Disney+ on September 4 and will be available to subscribers for 29.99USD. Disney also announced that it would be available in cinemas on the same date in countries that don’t have Disney+, which ought to include China, where cinemas recently reopened in much of the country.

Starring Liu Yifei, Gong Li and Jet Li, Disney’s Mulan has polarised opinion long before it’s hit the big — or smaller — screen. Liu’s posting of a meme in support of Hong Kong police led to calls to boycott the film in the US, while the movie’s every detail has seemingly been picked over by observers in China.

In March, a Hollywood premiere was held for the film, even as events and mass gatherings were being cancelled across the world amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Its new release date has since been subject to continued delays and speculation.

In line with previous reactions to Mulan-related announcements, the news of the film’s unusual release has split opinion on the Chinese internet. Some are eager to find out what the release plan is for China, while others have posited that the film and its central star are clearly cursed. “No matter what, people will say it’s all her fault,” reads one highly-upvoted comment on microblogging site Weibo.

Others have expressed shock at the pricing. “Am I reading this right? Overseas audiences will have pay 200RMB [30USD] to watch this online?” asks another popular Weibo post. “That’s way more expensive than here.”

We’ll find out in September just how strong the appetite is for this version of Mulan, but in the meantime, you can watch an older interpretation of this classic Chinese tale completely free on YouTube:

Watch an English Subtitled Version of 1939 Wartime Classic “Hua Mu Lan” Online

Jake Newby
Jake Newby is a Shanghai-based writer and editor with more than a decade's experience living and working in China. Previously managing editor of RADII and Time Out Shanghai, he's also written for the Associated Press, The Wire, the Financial Times and more.
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