'Mulan' Version Two: True to Chinese Roots

mulan-1 Looks like Disney’s 1998 animated film “Mulan” didn’t do the legendary female warrior enough justice, so Chinese filmmakers Jingle Ma and Wei Dong have turned it into a real-life epic film with actress Zhao Wei in the lead role as Hua Mulan. (Sadly, Mushu, Mulan's tiny dragon companion, doesn't appear in this one.) The lead role has been up for grabs for years, as Michelle Yeoh, Zhang Ziyi and Liu Yifei have all been considered. The epic story of Mulan, a Chinese girl who pretends to be a man so she could join the army in place of her father, traces back to the famous Chinese poem known as the “Ballad of Mulan,” written in the 6th century. So it's quite fitting that this story will go back to its roots, and be remade in the hands of Chinese filmmakers.

The film is set to release in China on December 8, 2009, with no confirmed date yet for its U.S. release. Check out the trailer and photos from the set and of the cast, after the jump.

Photos from the film set via Asia E News and Beijing Times; photos of the cast at the 62nd Cannes Film Festival photos via www.chinaview.cn