Marvel Studios is back in theaters with their next major project heading our way this September. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings will explore a new corner of the Marvel Cinematic Multiverse. Not only will it finally unveil the true Ten Rings organization teased since 2008’s Iron Man, but we’ll also get to explore a new cornerstone of cinematic representation, an Asian-American-led superhero film. In an interview with Empire, Kevin Feige revealed that he’s been on their list of potential cinematic heroes, but it was Black Panther’s success and social relevance that drove them to fast-track the project to ensure that everyone can see themselves on the silver screen.
I remember seeing a viral video when the Black Panther poster first came out. It was some young men in a movie theatre overwhelmed with excitement at seeing the poster, and it was moving because people were excited about the movie we were making. But it was also a harsh realisation that they were reacting that way because they had not seen it before. So Panther really coalesced the notion of, ‘Everybody deserves to see themselves portrayed in these larger-than-life ways.
While part of the film will explore the Ten Rings and Shang-Chi’s heritage, there’s a strong emphasis on his time living in the United States. It allows them to bring that very story to life and explore what it means to live as an Asian-American in the country. Black Panther was the first sign of the importance that cinema gives everyone a chance to see themselves on the silver screen, or even as a hero. Hopefully, it’s also just the beginning of exploring the diverse corners of the MCU.