Marvel introduces its first Chinese superhero with ‘Shang-Chi’

Film is franchise’s first Asian-focused superhero movie

"Shang-Chi and the Legends of the Ten Rings" in theaters Sept. 3.
"Shang-Chi and the Legends of the Ten Rings" in theaters Sept. 3. (Marvel Studios/YouTube)

The Marvel Universe is adding a new superhero to its storyline and it promises to be just as action-packed as its previous blockbusters.

“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” introduces fans to Shang-Chi, a skilled martial artist. The film’s frontrunner was trained to be an assassin by his father at a young age, growing up around the Ten Rings organization. He then chose to leave the elite crew to try and live a normal life in San Francisco but as the teaser notes, “you can’t outrun who you really are.”

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The film draws its inspiration from the original Marvel Comics but adds a new flair to diversity in Hollywood as it features a predominantly-Asian cast. Shang-Chi is Marvel’s 25th movie and brings to life the franchise’s first Chinese superhero.

Actor Simu Liu was tapped to play the hallmark role. Born in China, Liu immigrated to Canada at 5 years old and and grew up learning martial arts and gymnastics. His skills helped him break into the film industry as not only an actor but a skilled stuntman, too.

Liu’s abilities play to Shang-Chai’s superhero persona. Instead of cool superpowers, Shang-Chai is a master of numerous unarmed and weaponry-based fighting styles. With his martial arts mastery he takes on bad guys but like every superhero, he doesn’t do it alone.

Rapper and actress Awkwafina will star in her biggest blockbuster yet as Katy, Shang-Chai’s close friend in the film. Awkwafina has a largely comedic background, but her role won’t be limited to jokes as the film reveals Katy going for a wild action-packed ride.

Marvel has been tight-lipped about the other characters but has announced it tapped Ronny Chieng, another actor with a comedic background to play a friend of Shang-Chi. The film will also star Tony Leung as the main villian, The Mandarin, and another “Crazy Rich Asians” star Michelle Yeoh.

Shang-Chi promises to be a thrilling film that the coronavirus pandemic could no longer delay. You can watch the groundbreaking cast take on the big screen on Sept. 3.