Doesn’t it seem like everybody wants to boycott everything nowadays?
From entertainment to business and everything in between, people self-servingly want to project their own disdain for something, which is usually political and it really says a lot more about them than it does the thing that they’re protesting.
And this upcoming Disney movie is facing a boycott because its star said something most liberals deem highly controversial.
Hong Kong caught the world’s attention last week because they are facing rampant protests that began in June. Protestors filled Hong Kong International Airport on August 13th to express their frustration of the lack of Democracy.
Television footage showed tense confrontations late Tuesday between protesters wearing masks and local police. Protesters appeared to be barricading themselves inside a terminal using luggage carts as police tried to get them to leave.
The footage showed scuffles breaking out, and some of the protesters were handcuffed and led away by police. Security forces used pepper spray against the demonstrators and the airport canceled all flights as a result.
But the pro-democracy protest spilled out onto the streets following the airport invasion and continues to be an international story.
And now the Walt Disney Company seems to be caught in the middle of the controversy because Chinese-born star of the upcoming “Mulan” reboot, Liu Yifei, proclaimed on a blogging site called Weibo that she stood with the Hong Kong police.
She wrote, ”I support Hong Kong’s police, you can beat me up now. What a shame for Hong Kong. #Ialsosupporthongkongpolice#.”
Hashtag “BoycottMulan” trended following her comments and spiked to a global 75,000 as of Friday.
But could that bury the film before its March 27 release date in 2020?
Some think it could actually benefit the film.
Stanley Rosen, University of Southern California Professor of Political Science, who has an expertise in Asian affairs says, “With the boycott originating through Hong Kong, people in China will deliberately go see the movie to protest the boycott. All of this could actually benefit the film.”
If you’re not familiar with the plot of “Mulan,” it’s about a young Chinese maiden who disguises herself as a male warrior in order to save her father. This will be a live-action remake of the 1998 animated film.
Sources also say that it’s not unusual for a young Chinese-born actress like Yifei to be patriotic. While she was called out on Twitter for being a naturalized American citizen, Yifei’s acting and modeling career was launched in China.
Action star Jackie Chan – whose main residence is in Hong Kong – recently chimed in by saying, “What’s happening in Hong Kong recently has made a lot of people heartbroken and worried. When I saw CCTV had posted on Weibo the hashtag ‘Five-starred red flag has 1.4 billion flag guards, I re-posted it immediately. I wanted to express as a Hongkonger and Chinese person, the most basic principles of patriotism. Safety, stability and peace are like air. Only when you lose them will you realize how precious they are.”
The film is still over six months away from opening in theaters worldwide so this might be a thing that is forgotten long before we get to that point.