Disney‘s live-action remake of Mulan has come under attack for filming in Xinjiang in China.
The autonomous region hosts “alleged widespread human rights abuses”, per The Guardian, against Uighurs and other Muslim minority communities. Disney have been contacted for comment.
The region reportedly forces sterilisations and birth control among Uighur women, who describe the phenomenon as “demographic suicide” in an attempt to suppress birthrates.
The film’s credits give “special thanks” to eight government entities in Xinjiang including Turpan, a city in which a number of re-education camps have been documented (per ABC). Re-education camps are used to “eradicate the soil for the breeding and spread of religious extremism”.
Turpan, whose police Disney thanked at the end of Mulan, is the first documented case of re-education against Muslim minorities in Xinjiang. This Aug 2013 doc speaks of the "re-education" of "focus groups" to "eradicate the soil for the breeding and spread of religious extremism" pic.twitter.com/cMe4PqKl6p
— Adrian Zenz (@adrianzenz) September 8, 2020
The credits also nod to “the publicity department of CPC Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomy Region Committee”, which is Chinese Communist party’s propaganda department in Xinjiang.
Human Rights Watch China researcher Yaqiu Wang said of the controversy: “Disney should disclose the details about the human rights due diligence it had conducted — if there was any — before making the decision to film in Xinjiang, what agreements it had made with Xinjiang authorities in order to do the filming, and what assistances it received from authorities.”
.@Disney should disclose the details about when #Mulan was filmed in Xinjiang, what assistances it received from authorities, what agreements it had made with them in order to do the filming, and what kind of human rights due diligence it conducted before making the decisions. https://t.co/DT9hvcDQPq
— Yaqiu Wang 王亚秋 (@Yaqiu) September 7, 2020
Mulan, directed by Niki Caro and starring Liu Yifei in the titular role, was shot across roughly 20 locations in China including Mingsha Shan desert, which is in Xinjiang, and Tuyuk Valley, east of Turpan.
In a four-star review of Mulan, NME said: “Director Niki Caro’s modern update may take things in a different direction, but it makes Mulan a more empowering character.
“Thanks to her creative eye and Liu Yifei’s star turn, Mulan is the best live-action Disney adaptation to date.”