Acclaimed “Brokeback Mountain” and “Life of Pi” helmer Ang Lee was offered the job of directing Disney’s upcoming live-action adaptation of their 1998 animated hit “Mulan,” but decided to pass.
The reveal comes in a new THR article which indicates Disney is moving quickly to lock down a director, ideally an Asian one, to take the helm of the new film which is also conducting a global search to find a Chinese lead actress and love interest.
Disney began developing their version in early 2015 from Lauren Hynek and Elizabeth Martin’s spec script. Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver were then brought onboard to re-write and their draft was so well received at the studio that they fast tracked it and set a November 2nd 2018 release date.
That means the film is now racing to head into production and so far no-one is yet locked. There’s a time issue here as well with Sony Pictures developing a rival project, a live-action adaptation of the original ancient Chinese ballad upon which the animated film is based. Jason Keller (“Mirror Mirror”) penned the script for that which is in a much earlier stage of development and won’t hit cinemas until long after Disney’s take.