Posted on Thursday, July 8th, 2021 by
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Black Widow arrives this week, but it’s not the only Marvel Cinematic Universe movie due out this year. September will see the release of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, starring Simu Liu as Marvel character Shang-Chi. And while Shang-Chi may not be as overly familiar a character as some other Marvel heroes, the same could’ve been said for the characters of Guardians of the Galaxy, and we all know how that turned out (it turned out well). Below, I’ve rounded up some key details you need to know about Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Release Date and Where You Can Watch It
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is due out on September 3, 2021. As of now, Marvel and Disney haven’t announced any plans to release the film on Disney+ with Premiere Access – something they’re doing this week with Black Widow. That means we can assume, at least for the time being, that Shang-Chi will be exclusive to theaters. But that could always change, so keep an eye out.
What Is Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings?
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is the 25th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. In the comics, Shang-Chi is a master martial artist, and his backstory is slightly complicated. In the 1970s, Marvel wanted to turn the TV series Kung-Fu into a comic. Unable to get the rights to the show, Marvel decided to create their own Kung-Fu-inspired comic. They turned to the work of pulp writer Sax Rohmer, and introduced Shang-Chi as the son of Rohmer’s villainous character Dr. Fu Manchu. Shang-Chi was an original creation, but the characters he initially interacted with were taken directly from Rohmer’s work.
Over the years, the character evolved and changed, especially after Marvel lost the rights to the Fu Manchu characters. Steve Englehart and Jim Starlin are credited with creating Shang-Chi, with the character making his first appearance in Special Marvel Edition #15 in December 1973. Marvel has been attempting to bring Shang-Chi to the big screen for several years now – the film first entered development in 2001, but there was no serious movement on the property until 2018, when screenwriter David Callaham was hired.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Synopsis
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings stars Simu Liu as Shang-Chi, “who must confront the past he thought he left behind when he is drawn into the web of the mysterious Ten Rings organization.” The film introduces Shang-Chi as a new superhero “whose journey of self-discovery unfolds in this never-before-seen origin story.”
“Shang-Chi’s main problem in his life is rooted in not knowing who he really is,” said director Destin Daniel Cretton. “He has to learn how to own every part of himself. If he doesn’t allow himself to look at all of it—the good, the bad, the light and the dark—and to own it all, he won’t be able to reach his full potential.”
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Director, Crew, and More
Destin Daniel Cretton, who helmed Short Term 12, Just Mercy, and The Glass Castle, directs Shang-chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. “Authenticity and respect and staying true to this genre was the main objective from day one,” Cretton. “There’s choreography that’s reminiscent of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, and other fight scenes are inspired by Jackie Chan. We also had choreographers from mainland China who created some beautiful wuxia-style fight scenes.”
Cretton also wrote the script, along with David Callaham and Andrew Lanham. Kevin Feige and Jonathan Schwartz produce, with Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso and Charles Newirth serving as executive producers. Bill Pope is the cinematographer. Joel P. West is the editor.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Cast
Simu Liu stars Shang-Chi. “There was a time [as an Asian actor], I didn’t want anybody to see me doing martial arts,” Liu. “But I grew up watching Jet Li and Jackie Chan, and I remember the immense amount of pride that I felt watching them kick ass. I think Shang-Chi can absolutely be that for Asian Americans. It means that kids growing up today will have what we never did — the ability to watch the screen and to really feel seen.”
The film also stars Tony Leung as Wenwu AKA The Mandarin (not to be confused with Ben Kingsley’s fake-out Mandarin in Iron Man 3); Awkwafina as Shang-Chi’s friend Katy; and Michelle Yeoh as Jiang Nan. Other cast members include Fala Chen, Meng’er Zhang, Florian Munteanu, and Ronny Chieng.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Trailer
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