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This article focuses on the Disney movie Mulan.
For the Chinese poem of the same name, see
Mulan (Legend).
For the titular character, see Mulan.

Mulan is a Disney animated film featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time. It was written by Rita Hsiao, Philip LaZebnik, Chris Sanders, Eugenia Bostwick-Singer and Raymond Singer; and directed by Tony Bancroft and Barry Cook. It was released on June 19, 1998.

Mulan is based on Mulan, a Chinese poem.


The Huns, led by the ruthless Shan Yu, invade Han China, forcing the Chinese emperor to command a general mobilization. Each family is given a conscription notice, requiring one man from each family to join the Chinese army. When Fa Mulan hears that her elderly father Fa Zhou, the only man in their family, is once more to go to war, anxiety and apprehension grip her. Mulan decides to take matters into her own hands, by putting on the guise of a man so that she can go to war instead of her father. When her family learns of Mulan's secret departure, they are all very anxious. Fa Zhou, Mulan's father, prays to his family's ancestors for the safety of his child. The ancestors then order their "Great Stone Dragon" to protect Mulan. The ancestors are unaware that the statue of Great Stone Dragon failed to come to life, and that Mushu, a small dragon, is the one to go and protect Mulan.

Mulan is initially misguided by Mushu in how to behave like a man, and starts a ruckus at the training camp. However, under command of Li Shang, she and her new friends at the camp, Yao, Ling and Chien-Po, become skilled warriors. Mushu, desiring to see Mulan succeed, creates a fake order from Li Shang's father, General Li, ordering Li Shang to follow them into the mountains. The troops set out to meet General Li, but arrive at a burnt-out encampment and discover that General Li and his troops have been wiped out by the Huns. As they solemnly leave the mountains, they are ambushed by the Huns, but the clever use of a rocket by Mulan creates an avalanche which buries most of the Huns. Mulan is slashed in the chest by an enraged Shan Yu, and her deception is revealed when the wound is bandaged. Instead of executing Mulan as the law requires, Li Shang relents and decides to spare her life for saving him, but expels her from the army, leaving her on the mountain as the rest of the army departs for the Imperial City to report the news of the Huns' demise. However it is revealed that several Hun warriors including Shan Yu survive the avalanche, and Mulan catches sight of them as they make their way to the City, intent on capturing the Emperor.

In the Imperial City, Mulan attempts to warn Li Shang about Shan Yu, but he refuses to listen. The Huns appear and capture the Emperor, locking themselves inside the palace. With Mulan's help, Yao, Ling, and Chien-Po pose as concubines and are able to enter the palace and, with the help of Li Shang, defeat Shan Yu's men. As Shang prevents Shan Yu from assassinating the Emperor, Mulan lures the Hun onto the roof where she engages him in single combat. Meanwhile, acting on Mulan's instructions, Mushu fires a bundle of fireworks rockets at Shan Yu on her signal and kills him. Mulan is praised by the Emperor and the people of China, who all bow to her as an unprecedented honor. While she accepts the Emperor's crest and Shan Yu's sword as gifts, she politely declines his offer to be his advisor and asks to return to her family. She returns home and presents these gifts to her father, but he is more overjoyed to have his daughter back safely. Li Shang, who has become enamored with Mulan, soon arrives under the guise of returning her helmet, but accepts the family's invitation for dinner. Earlier in the film, Mulan was declared unfit for marriage, but this is not the case with her budding romance with Li Shang. Mushu is granted a position as a Fa family guardian by the ancestors amid a returning celebration.

Show Adaptation

  • Mulan originates from a faraway village in the Enchanted Forest. Her backstory is vague, but it is known she did once serve in the emperor's army.
  • Mulan is hired by King Fergus as Princess Merida's tutor, teaching her about fighting in a war. During that time, she and Merida become close friends.
  • Mulan doesn't fall in love and marry. She becomes the traveling companion of Prince Phillip on his mission to rescue Princess Aurora. Later, Mulan develops romantic feelings for Aurora. When she attempts to confess these feelings, Aurora reveals she and Phillip are expecting a baby. Discouraged, Mulan leaves on a journey to join the Merry Men.
  • Later, Mulan rescues Ruby, who was trapped in her wolf form by a witch, and, after helping Merida defeat King Arthur and Zelena, the duo ventures the Enchanted Forest in search of Ruby's pack.
  • Neal once mentions to Mulan that there is a film about her; referring to the Disney film.
  • The Dragon's beast form is a red Chinese dragon which is similar to Mushu.

Characters Featured

Original Character Adapted as First Featured in
Fa Mulan Mulan "Broken"
The Emperor of China The emperor (mentioned) "The Outsider"

Items Featured

Original Item Adapted as First Featured in
Fa Zhou's sword Mulan's sword "Broken"

Locations Featured

Original Location Adapted as First Featured in
China The Empire "The Outsider"
Mulan's village Chinese village "The Outsider"


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