While Disney has a ton of live-action remakes on the way, the next one they'll be developing is Mulan, which should be good news to fans of their 1998 animated film. The studio has just set Niki Caro as director, after recently working with her on McFarland, USA.
With cultural sensitivity a bigger issue than ever in Hollywood right now, tackling a movie like Mulan can be risky. Disney isn't kidding around and have taken a number of steps to ensure historical and cultural accuracy. Caro is just part of that plan. The New Zealand native broke out years ago with her groundbreaking Maori fairy tale, Whale Rider; while McFarland, USA focused on California's Mexican -American community. So she knows how to immerse herself in a culture and bring it to life with authenticity on the big screen. Disney tried to find an Asian filmmaker first, but the offers they put to Ang Lee and Jiang Wen (who played Baze in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story) didn't work out. That left the door open for Caro, who beat out Wonder Woman's Patty Jenkins and Michelle McLaren (Game of Thrones) for the job.
Disney has also hired Bill Kong, a Hong Kong producer known for big crossover hits like House of Flying Daggers and Hero. He'll help ensure everything remains as authentic as possible, along with Chinese cultural consultants Disney has made part of the production. Despite earlier reports, every one of the major roles will be played by Chinese actors, including the love interest. If the word "white-washing" comes up at any point, feel free to scream.
Mulan opens November 2nd 2018. [THR]