Shang-Chi finally gets representation correct

Photo courtesy of Merch HUSEY at

“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” has become one of the highest-grossing movies of the year, shattering box office records in just four days of its release.

Walt Disney Studios broke Labor Day weekend records for box office movies in Canada, grossing a whopping $75.5 million during the first three days of the holiday, making more than Halloween (2007), and Marvel’s most recent release, Black Widow. Shang-Chi finished just short of the $100 million mark by the end of Monday.

Despite the ongoing battle with COVID-19, fans came out to show their loyalty to the Marvel Universe. The movie made close to $150 million across the globe. Marvel fans in China eagerly await the release of Shang-Chi, an important fan base for Marvel studios.

Disney’s live-action remake, “Mulan” left a sour taste in fans’ mouths across the globe and angered many due to its lack of Asian representation. Honk Kong viewers wanted to boycott the movie in general due to comments made by leading actor, Liu Yifei.

According to Wang Yuen, “I think that we need an Asian superhero because of the history of Asians in Western cinema being villainous or servile, from a young person’s perspective, it is empowering.”

“I think that we need an [Asian] superhero because of the history of Asians in Western cinema being villainous or servile … from a young person’s perspective it’s empowering,” Dr. Nancy Wang Yuen, sociologist and author of Reel Inequality: Hollywood actors and racism said in an interview with BBC.

 With the release of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” Canadian actor Simu Liu opens doors for Asian leading actors to be cast in future movies. 

“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” is Marvel’s first major movie production with a superhero being of Eastern Asian descent. The release comes at a time of anti-Asian hate; according to the FBI, the US saw a spike in anti-Asian hate crime by 70% in 2020.

Screenwriter and creative strategist William Yu believes the film will be a turning point against Asian hate.

“…We can see these types of Asian characters who are not only heroic but also have flaws and a range of experiences that make them complex and interesting,” Yu said.

Shang-Chi is only the beginning for Asian-American leading actors; Marvel plans to release its next movie in the Marvel universe trilogy, ‘Eternals,’ which is expected to debut in November and according to Asian Movie Pulse reviewer Grace Han cane hopefully create “more diversity and variety of the Asian diaspora.”

Leave a Reply