Disney’s live-action remake of their 1998 animated hit Mulan does not yet have a cast, but nearly 90,000 people are preemptively calling for an Asian actor to play the titular role and for Disney to stop “whitewashing” non-white roles.
A new petition, which was created by Natalie Molnar and has over 87,000 supporters, reads, “Take a stand against whitewashing in our media. Sign this petition to tell Disney that we demand to see them cast an Asian Mulan!”
The Last Airbender, Pan and the upcoming Ghost in the Shell live-action adaptation are all referenced in the petition as examples of non-white characters being portrayed by white actors. The latter has been heavily criticized for casting Scarlett Johansson in the lead role.
“Casting a Caucasian actor as a character of color, regardless of reason (‘Oh, we just want a big name attached to this movie’, ‘Western audiences won't watch a movie about Asian people’, etc) has a direct, harmful impact on not only the movie itself, but the audience, as well as POC members of the acting community,” the petition continues.
Mulan, which tells the story of a Chinese female warrior disguised as a man, is the latest animated Disney classic to receive the live-action facelift, following The Jungle Book and the upcoming Beauty and the Beast. Chris Bender and J.C. Spink are producing the upcoming Mulan for Disney.