Everything missing in Disney's live action remake of Mulan: From the hit songs to her lovable animal sidekick

Kimberley Bond
·2-min read
getty images
getty images

After its future hung in the balance due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis, the live-action version of Mulan is finally available to watch – if you have Disney Plus, that is.

The heart of the story remains the same as the 1998 animated classic – Crystal Liu Yifei stars as Hua Mulan, who joins the Chinese army disguised as a man in a bid to save her father.

However, fans who have seen both films are quick to point out a number of changes from the 2020 edition to the old family favourite.

But just how different is the reboot? Here are some of the differences between the two…

General Li-Shang

The live-action Mulan sees some changes (getty images)
The live-action Mulan sees some changes (getty images)

In the 1998 edition, the stern general played Mulan’s love interest, but the romantic subplot has seemingly been cut from the 2020 series.

Instead, Mulan fights alongside Chen Honghui, another military recruit, portrayed by Yoson An.



The affable, lovable dragon who served as Mulan’s companion and good-luck charm in the 1998 edition was brought to life by Eddie Murphy. However, the character has been left out of the remake.

The elimination of Mushu is thought to be down to the 2020 Mulan film being more closely linked to the Chinese fable of Hua Mulan, or the Ballad of Mulan – which has seen some old favourites cut from the series altogether.

Bori Khan and Xian Lang

Xian Lang is a new villain in the remake ()
Xian Lang is a new villain in the remake ()

While the villain in the original film is Shan Yu, the evil leader of the invading Hun Army, the villains in the live-action version are Bori Khan (Jason Scott Lee), a fierce warrior who is intent on avenging his father’s death.

He is joined by shape-shifting witch Xian Lang, played by Gong Li, who can transform into a falcon.

The musical numbers

Sadly, we won’t hear I’ll Make A Man Out of You – the film is not intended to be an exact remake of the original.

However, that doesn’t mean that there won’t be any nods to the 1998 classic – with an instrumental version of the song Reflection a throwback to the original animated film being used in latest trailer.

Mulan is available to view on Disney Plus

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