Disney has released a second trailer for their live-action adaptation of the Chinese fairytale of Mulan (based on a poem and not historical events), which had been turned into an animated feature film by the animation division back in 1998.

This time we’re given a lot more than pretty shots as they give a good portion of the plot and reveal the new villains, including a new witch character that has long been rumored as one of the antagonists.

Watch the trailer below.

When the Emperor of China issues a decree that one man per family must serve in the Imperial Army to defend the country from Northern invaders, Hua Mulan, the eldest daughter of an honored warrior, steps in to take the place of her ailing father. Masquerading as a man, Hua Jun, she is tested every step of the way and must harness her inner-strength and embrace her true potential. It is an epic journey that will transform her into an honored warrior and earn her the respect of a grateful nation…and a proud father.

“Mulan” features a celebrated international cast that includes: Yifei Liu as Mulan; Donnie Yen as Commander Tung; Jason Scott Lee as Böri Khan; Yoson An as Cheng Honghui; with Gong Li as Xianniang and Jet Li as the Emperor. The film is directed by Niki Caro from a screenplay by Rick Jaffa & Amanda Silver and Elizabeth Martin & Lauren Hynek based on the narrative poem “The Ballad of Mulan.”

 

We see Mulan’s father Hua Zhou played by Tzi Ma talking about the Phoenix which seemingly has some family significance as they have a statue of it.
We eventually get a brief glimpse of the Phoenix, but it remains to be seen if it’ll actually talk or it might actually be a character that transformers into the Phoenix. We see one of the villains is able to transform into an eagle. I’m thinking this is the case because the film seems a lot more grounded than we’re used to with these live-action remakes and how the Phoenix factors into the film is going have a large impact on the tone of the film depending how much screentime it has.
The Emperor played by Jet Li is sitting on a throne with gold dragons, a potential nod to Mushu the Dragon, who likely won’t be appearing in the film.
The main villain of the film is Bori Khan played by Jason Scott Lee, which is replacing the Huns/Shang Yu from the original animated film. We see Khan in a very scenic spot possibly shot in New Zealand with his army behind him.
Gong Li plays yet another new villain in the film a witch named Xianniang that can transform into an eagle and during an altercation with Mulan discovers her secret. Her ability to transform into a bird gives me the impression that the Phoenix might actually be either Mulan or her father Hua Zhou.
We get a couple of stoic shots of Donnie Yen as Commander Tung first meeting Mulan during a recruitment/training scene along with a shot in his tent, possibly before a battle.
The second shot of Jet Li has the Emperor, but this time he is wearing armor possibly in the final act of the movie. Like Yen, looking very stoic in his costume.

 

The film certainly looks a lot more grounded than previous efforts such as Aladdin or Beauty & The Beast, which might be due to the limited fantastic elements on display in the new footage.

Our pals over at TheDisinsider had previously reported that a new phoenix (a mythological bird that rises from the ashes) character would be replacing Mushu the Dragon, and this new Mulan trailer has seemingly confirmed that by talking about the phoenix and having one flying around in a couple of shots.

There had been reports of extensive reshoots on the film that would have meant a big delay in the film’s release date. However, Disney clearly is sticking to the original release date as it’s mentioned in the trailer and new poster.

Mulan is seemingly still set for release on March 27th, 2020.

SOURCE: WALT DISNEY STUDIOS 

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