Why Was Mulan 2020 Boycotted?


Following the trend of live-action remakes, Disney’s new Mulan was released on Sept. 4 this year. However, Disney has gone under fire for the production of this movie, and many people are saying to boycott the movie. It has nothing to do with the movie itself, but the main actress and where it was shot.

There are two main reasons for the boycott of Mulan are: Liu Yifei’s (the actress playing Mulan) support of Hong Kong Police, and the filming of the movie in the Xinjiang region of China.

Liu Yifei and Hong Kong

In August of 2019, actress Liu Yifei posted to Weibo, a Chinese social media, the following: “I also support Hong Kong police. You can beat me up now.” The context of this post revolves around the Hong Kong protests that have been happening since March of 2019. Apparently, a man had been accused of being an undercover police officer in Hong Kong, and he was then attacked by protestors. Liu Yifei’s claim to support Hong Kong police has caused a boycott of the movie to be called for on Twitter. Many people accused Liu of supporting human rights violations and criticized Disney for casting her.

Filming in the Xinjiang Region

Another issue that got Disney in trouble are the special thanks given during the movie’s credits. Mulan was partially filmed in the Xinjiang region of China, and Disney specifically gave thanks to the ‘Publicity Department of CPC Uyghur Autonomous Region Committee’ However, this happens to be the propaganda department of the Chinese Communist Party in Xinjiang. Disney also thanked the ‘Bureau of Public Security in Turpan (a municipality in Xinjiang). This is an issue because of the mistreatment of Uyghur Muslims in the region. It’s been estimated by researchers that over 1,000,000 muslims are being held in “Re-education” camps in the Xinjiang region where they are forced to learn mandarin and do labor. According to ‘Quartz’ “Figuring differential internment rates—10 percent for areas that have a majority Muslim population and 5 percent for places with a minority population…estimated 1,060,000 Muslims detained in September 2018.” Once again, Disney has been accused of supporting these violations of human rights.