Marvel's 'Shang-Chi' Teaser Introduces a Martial Arts Legend into the MCU
Simu Liu stars in the first Asian-led MCU superhero movie.
With Marvel's Phase 4 currently underway after the debuts of WandaVision and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, it's time to introduce some new superheroes into the mix. The first of the MCU's new additions comes courtesy of Shang-Chi, a master of martial arts—the best in the world—and an expert wielder of chi, giving him superhuman strength and the ability to fight opponents way stronger than himself. He'll make his debut in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, and the teaser that Marvel released today looks fantastic.
We don't know a ton about the plot of the movie, only that it will follow Shang-Chi (played by Simu Liu), living as a regular guy in San Francisco before his past catches up to him, forcing him to confront his connection to the secretive Ten Rings organization led by Marvel villain the Mandarin, Shang-Chi's father. If the Ten Rings sounds familiar, that's because it was the subject of both Iron Man and Iron Man 3, the latter of which introduced a pretend version of the Mandarin played by Ben Kingsley. In Shang-Chi, the Mandarin is played by Tony Leung, and the character will also replace Shang-Chi's canonical father Fu Manchu, partly because Marvel no longer has the rights to the character and partly because Fu Manchu is a breathtakingly racist Asian caricature.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is directed by Destin Daniel Cretton and also stars Awkwafina as Shang-Chi's buddy Katy, Fala Chen as Jiang Li, Meng'er Zhang as Xialing, Shang-Chi’s estranged sister, Florian Munteanu as Marvel supervillain Razor Fist, Ronny Chieng as Jon Jon, and Michelle Yeoh as Jiang Nan. It opens in theaters September 3, 2021.
Emma Stefansky is a staff entertainment writer at Thrillist. Follow her on Twitter @stefabsky.