Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is gaining hype as one of the most anticipated movies of Phase 4 thanks to its expansion into a new culture and new style of action. This comes similarly to what Black Panther did in 2018 when it became the highest-grossing solo movie in the MCU’s Infinity Saga.
In a recent interview with Time Magazine, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings star Simu Liu marked the arrival of Chadwick Boseman’s Black Panther in 2018 as a “watershed moment” for representation in Hollywood blockbusters. Liu remarks on how much he owes to the success of that movie as he takes on his first opportunity with the MCU:
“It was such a great statement to the powers that be in Hollywood to say: ‘We’re here, and we’ve been here, and we love watching movies that represent us, that represent our faces and our stories and our lives.’ Without the success of Black Panther, I wouldn’t have a job today.”
He goes on to explain how Hollywood has adapted and evolved in recent years, expanding on the diversity in movies that make an impact on culture:
“As time went on I felt the need to really take up space, to show people it was OK to be proud of where you came from and to be open about it. I don’t do it perfectly, certainly, but I’ve really come to embrace it as a part of my platform.”
While Liu has gained a fair amount of success in TV shows like Kim’s Convenience, the role of Shang-Chi will be his first foray into leading a major Hollywood movie. The MCU has an outstanding history with making superstars out of up-and-coming actors, and Liu’s enthusiasm and athletic abilities should lend perfectly to excelling in his MCU debut.