Ever since Disney announced plans to develop a
live-action version of their hit animated film Mulan, possible casting choices
have sparked discussions among fans both in China and abroad.
Many fans are concerned the studio will give
into a history of "whitewashing" when casting roles for its live-action
adaptation of its films.
Internet user Natalie Molnar, a children's
librarian and also a member of the popular social media website Care2, initiated
a petition titled "Tell Disney You Don't Want A Whitewashed Mulan!" to prevent
this from happening. So far, the thread has received 38,338 signatures.
"Disney just announced it will develop a
live-action Mulan film. Take a stand against whitewashing in our media. Sign
this petition to tell Disney that we demand to see them cast an Asian Mulan!
Mulan was based on a Chinese legend, the story
of Hua Mu Lan, in which a young girl disguises herself as a man to serve as a
soldier in the battle against Genghis Khan.
The character, story, and fans deserve the best
retelling of the story Disney can produce, and although the film was only
announced March 30, this disturbing trend of whitewashing in big-budget movies
can't get a chance to take root in Mulan as well, and if any company can afford
to 'risk' adapting a beloved story with a cast of POCs (refering to People of
Color, a term used primarily in the United States to describe any person who is
not white), it's Disney," read the petition.