Disney banks on books

Studio aims to fuel 'Mulan' interest

Disney Studios’ big animation bet for summer, “Mulan,” hits theaters June 19, and Disney’s publishing arm, Hyperion, is right in step, about to unleash three new movie-inspired books.

The centuries-old Asian legend of Mulan — the secret soldier — is the basis of Disney’s 36th full-length animated feature, and “The Art of Mulan,” by Jeff Kurtti, chronicles the production team’s research trip to China and the creative development of the pic, from concept art to production stills.

Kurrti describes how the team broke new ground in creating certain shots, particularly the final crowd scenes that employ up to 10,000 hand-animated characters on screen at once, all with “full integrity and movement.”

The “Mulan Postcard Book” will feature 30 color reproductions of scenes from the movie.

Because of the special nature of the legend itself, Hyperion is also publishing a collector’s “folding, accordion book” of the ancient poem that inspired the film.

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