Bolstered by the success of Cinderella, Disney added yet another live-action adaptation to its pipeline.
The Hollywood Reporter revealed that Disney officially gave the green light to a live-action remake of the 1998 animated film Mulan.
The film’s script, purchased by Disney, was written by Elizabeth Martin and Lauren Hynek. It will be produced by Chris Bender and J.C. Spink (presumably under their Benderspink production banner).
The original animated film, directed by Tony Bancroft and Barry Cook, was one of the highlights of the original Disney renaissance, earning both Golden Globe and Academy Award nominations and winning several Annie Awards including Best Animated Feature.
Mulan is also known for spawning the careers of Chris Sanders and Dean Deblois. Sanders was one of the screenwriters on the film, while Deblois served as co-head of story. Both would eventually become frequent writer/director partners and would later go on to direct Disney’s Lilo & Stitch before heading off to DreamWorks to direct the first How to Train Your Dragon. They have since split off to do their own projects at the company (Sanders with The Croods, Deblois with the Dragons sequels).
The plot of the animated film (and presumably the live-action remake) centers around Hua Mulan, a daughter of a famed warrior who disguises herself as a young man to help fight back an invasion by the Xiongnu army.
The film joins an ever-growing list of upcoming live-action adaptations. This list now includes The Jungle Book, Beauty and the Beast, a sequel to Alice in Wonderland (2010), and the Tim Burton-directed Dumbo.
Whether or not this film will lean towards a straightforward approach (Cinderella), have a revisionist angle (Alice in Wonderland and Maleficent), or will combine the two (Beauty and the Beast) remains to be seen. The animated film has a musical component and whether or not this will be kept in the live-action version remains to be seen as well.
What do you think? Can Disney pull off a live-action Mulan? Which approach should the film take (straightforward, revisionist, or a combination)?