It looks as though Disney is set to bring the classic tale Mulan back to theater audiences. According to a report from Channel NewsAsia (found via ScreenRant), Disney is investing $100 million into an English-language live-action 3D version of the film.
Apparently, the beautiful and talented Zhang Ziyi is producing the film as well as tackling the role of the titular Mulan.
Synopsis: “Mulan tells the story of a lady warrior Hua Mulan (Zhang), who impersonates a man to enlist in the army in her elderly father’s place and repel an invasion of her homeland. Along the way, she becomes involved with fellow soldier General Li, who admires her and risks his life to hide her gender as state laws forbade women from joining the army.”
Wang Lee Hom, a US-born singer/actor is currently being eyed for the role of General Li. Charles Russel (The Mask, The Scorpion King) is slated to direct and the movie is set to begin production in China in October.
Hopefully with a giant production budget like this, we’ll see some fantastic action sequences and at least a PG-13 rating. Interestingly enough, it was Zhang Ziyi who brought the project to Disney and not the Mouse’s idea out of the gate.
I became a fan of Ziyi (who also uses the name Ziyi Zhang) in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and she continued to impress me with her turn in Hero. However, it was her role in Memoirs of a Geisha that really solidified her as a talented star in my mind.
Her diminutive physique and understated good looks only add to the wonder that is this 31-year old actress. Although she wasn’t nominated for an Academy Award for Geisha, she did receive nomination for a Golden Globe, losing to Felicity Huffman that year.
She has a couple of movies coming out this year: Mo shu wai zhuan and The Grand Master, although I doubt we’ll see either of those in US theaters.