Marvel Star Addresses ‘Shang-Chi’ Release Upset Following Resurfaced Comments Controversy

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(L-R) Meng’er Zhang (Xialing), Simu Liu (Shang-Chi) and Awkwafina (Katy) in Marvel's Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

Credit: Marvel Studios

Director Destin Daniel Cretton’s Marvel movie, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is currently dominating the box office. After launching in a record-breaking spot over Labor Day weekend last week, Shang-Chi has maintained its number one position at the domestic box office.

The latest outing in Kevin Feige’s Marvel Cinematic Universe sees the leading man, Simu Liu as the Master of Kung Fu, confront his past in a new action-adventure from Marvel Studios. However, recent comments from its star about China may upset Shang-Chi‘s release, and now, the actor has weighed in on the controversy.

Shang-chi poster featured
Credit: Marvel Studios

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021) is the second movie in the MCU’s Phase 4. Following on from Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow (2021) — which was released this July — Shang-Chi debuted exclusively in theaters at the beginning of September. Unlike its predecessor, the martial arts movie opens with a 45-day run before moving to a streaming service — Black Widow opened simultaneously on Disney+ and in theaters, something that has led Johansson to sue The Walt Disney Company.

scarlett johansson as black widow
Credit: Marvel Studios

Starring Liu in the title role, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings also stars Awkwafina (Katy), Tony Leung (Xu Wenwu AKA The Mandarin), Meng’er Zhang (Xialing), Fala Chen (Li), Ronny Chieng (Jon Jon), Michelle Yeoh (Ying Nan), and Ben Kingsley (Trevor Slattery), as well as Doctor Strange‘s Benedict Wong (Wong). The film also sees a cameo appearance from The Incredible Hulk‘s (2008) Abomination, played by Tim Roth.

the abomination
Credit: Marvel Studios

Recently, Deadline reported that resurfaced comments from Liu regarding China may have caused an upset in Shang-Chi‘s release. The comments come from a 2017 interview with CBC where Liu discusses his parents and their views on China.

In a 2017 interview with the CBC, the Canadian-born actor referenced his parents telling him of conditions under Communist rule and referring to China as a “third world” country where people were “dying of starvation.”

Shang-Chi using his powers
Credit: Marvel Studios

The resurfaced comments were said to have been “making waves on Chinese social media”. At the time of the comments resurfacing, Liu had not responded to the controversy despite being very active on social media. Now the actor behind Marvel’s first leading Asian superhero has weighed in on the reports.

Taking to his Instagram story, Liu wrote:

“WHAT WESTERN NEWS OFTEN FAILS TO REPORT ON IS THE ABSOLUTE GROUNDSWELL OF SUPPORT THAT WE’VE RECEIVED FROM ALL PARTS OF THE WORLD – INCLUDING PEOPLE FROM CHINA!

ALL AROUND US, MEDIA NARRATIVES ARE POLARIZING US AND TURNING US AGAINST EACH OTHER. BUT I HAVE SEEN THE KINDNESS AND THE EMPATHY THAT ALL PEOPLE POSSESS. AND I KNOW THAT WE HAVE FANS FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD WHO CANNOT WAIT TO WATCH OUR MOVIE AND MAKE HISTORY WITH US!

WHETHER YOU SEEK POSITIVITY OR TOXICITY ON SOCIAL MEDIA… YOU WILL FIND IT.

THANKS TO ALL MARVEL FANS IN CHINA AND ALL AROUND THE WORLD! WE LOVE YOU!!”

Screenshot of Simu Liu's Instagram Story
Credit: Simu Liu Instagram

As well as the resurfaced comments surrounding China from Liu, a Marvel director’s resurfaced interview may also cause upset for the next MCU release. Comments from Eternals (2021) director, Chloé Zhao, led to her Academy Award-winning film, Nomadland (2020) being censored in China.

Only time will tell if Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and Eternals will receive a Chinese release date.

Simu Liu as Shang-Chi master of kung fu in Marvel Shang Chi adn the legend of the ten rings
Credit: Marvel Studios

Next in Marvel’s Phase 4 is Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021) and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2021). And then looking even further ahead, the studio may have just confirmed when fans will see the next Avengers-level team up in the Marvel Universe after announcing a slew of new release dates for unconfirmed movies.

Have you seen Marvel’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings yet? Let us know in the comments?

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