Mulan going straight to Disney+

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LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 13: Yifei Liu attends the "Mulan" photocall at Trafalgar Hotel on March 13, 2020 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)

Jess Oakley, Reporter

The live action remake of beloved 1998 animated Disney movie was scheduled to be released in theatres on March 9, 2020. Of course, it was pushed back due to the COVID-19 outbreak that made many public places, including movie theatres, shut down for months. The release date has been pushed back to Sept. 4, being available on Disney’s streaming service Disney+. The movie is only available with premier access and a Disney+ subscription, a $29.99 additional cost to the $6.99 monthly charge or $69.99 yearly subscription fee. With premier access you can stream the movie before it’s released to the rest of the Disney+ subscribers, allowing you to watch it before many others get the chance to. You may also watch and download the movie as many times as you want for however long you have Disney+. 

It is still unknown when the movie will be released for the rest of the subscribers of Disney+, or if it will be released physically as a Blu-ray or 4K disc. The movie will be premiering in theatres in countries or territories that do not yet have access to Disney+, such as China, which is a target audience for the movie. Some of the aspects of the film being changed to appeal more to a Chinese audience. The movie will be shown in theatres in northern Europe and Latin America where possible. 

Currently, there is a lot of controversy surrounding the movie. For one thing, while the entire cast is of Asian descent, none of the writers or directors are Asian, which raises some red flags about the reason the movie was made in the first place. I know Asian Americans who love the 1998 animated movie, and I know others who absolutely hate it. I think the same will be said of the 2020 live-action release. Mulan is ultimately a hero in Chinese legend and culture, so the way we make media about her needs to always be conscious of that fact. Two summers ago I got the chance to see a Chinese made live action movie about Mulan, and it seems that the 2020 Disney remake is leaning more towards that kind of story line. 

When you look at the Google page for Mulan, you can see that it has a rating of 2.6, before ever being seen by anyone. Its ratings are mostly five or one star ratings, with few ratings deviating from the two extremes. There seems to be a divide about the reception of this movie, and with the Hong Kong protests still ongoing, it is a very interesting time to be releasing a movie about female heroism. Liu Yifei, the actress that plays Mulan in the movie, was quoted voicing her support for the Hong Kong police force in their methods of handling protestors. Many pro-democracy fighters have called for a boycott of the entire movie.

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