Disney Defends Live-Action Mulan Credits Thanking Chinese Government

Disney’s live action Mulan remake caused controversy, both in China and around the world, when fans discovered notes in the film’s credits thanking several government entities that have been linked to the cultural genocide of the Uighur Muslim population. Now, the company has defended the decision, calling it part of a “standard practice across the film industry worldwide,” Variety reports.

Parts of Disney’s new Mulan film were filmed in the region of Xinjiang, where internment camps have been located since at least 2017. A new statement from Disney has downplayed the extent of filming done in the region, as well as palming off responsibility for acknowledgements made in the films credits–including thanks to the Turpan Bureau of Public Security, which has been sanctioned by the US Bureau of Industry and Security for “human rights violations and abuses in the implementation of China’s campaign of repression, mass arbitrary detention, and high-technology surveillance against Uighurs, Kazakhs, and other members of Muslim minority groups.”

The statement by Disney’s Sean Bailey was sent to British politician Iain Duncan Smith–who was not all that impressed by the response.

Disney’s corporate policy does not appear to care about the human rights issues affecting the #Uighurs. It seems human rights come second to the corporate policy of not upsetting China. (2/2) pic.twitter.com/3wXVQLuVOf

In short, the letter downplays the filming that was done in the Xinjiang region, saying that only four days of shooting was done there, comprising just 78 seconds of the finished film. The letter also passes responsibility for the film’s controversial credits to Beijing Shadow Times, the Chinese production company Disney partnered with for its shoots in China. “The production company Beijing Shadow Times provided our production team with the list of acknowledgements to be included in the credits for Mulan,” the statement reads.

Despite its clear attempts to keep everyone happy, Disney has struggled to have its cake and eat it too with Mulan. The film hasn’t been as successful in China as Disney might have expected, with China declaring a media blackout around the film in response to the controversy.

While Disney hasn’t released numbers for purchases made through Disney Plus, the film has seen a generally lukewarm reception from critics.

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