Donnie Yen has joined the cast of Disney’s live action adaptation of their 1998 animated film Mulan.
Yen will play Commander Tung, the mentor and trainer of the titular character, a young woman who poses as a man in order to join the army and defend her homeland from invaders. Liu Yifei, also known as Crystal Liu, will be playing the titular character who was voiced by Ming-Na Wen in the animated version.
Yen is one the biggest stars in Hong Kong cinema, first rising to fame in the action series Iron Monkey. More recently he starred in a trilogy of bio-pics about famed martial artist and teacher Ip Man. He also has several Hollywood films to his credit including 2002’s Blade II and 2016’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
While I still see Disney’s long-term plan of adapting their animated features into live action films without any substantive changes to the material as nothing more than a cynical cash grab, I will say that the inclusion of Yen does have me interested in the film. So well done Disney, I guess.
Niki Caro is set to direct Mulan, which is scheduled for a March 27, 2020 release.