Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings impacts the film industry with its Asian representation

The movie industry has been criticized for not having an extremely diverse community of actors. In the past white actors have often portrayed a character that was written as a person of color. In general, many jobs that could easily go to a non-white person, have gone to a white person. Now, slowly the film industry has started to become more diverse and bring in movies with diverse casts.

On September 3rd, 2021, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings was released to movie theaters all around the world. It takes place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Shang-Chi is also seen in the Marvel comics. Before the movie came out, Shang-Chi did not have as much advertisement or promotion compared to other Marvel movies. Despite the lack of marketing, the film has gained around $370,000,000 in global ticket sales, and is one of the top-grossing movies of 2021. The film has a 92% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is the first Marvel movie with an Asian lead. The setting starts in San Francisco, but eventually Shang-Chi and his best friend, Katy Chen travel to China in order to save his late mother’s old town from Fu Manchu. With the setting mainly being in China, Marvel needed East Asian, let alone Chinese, actors.  Simu Liu, a Chinese-Canadian actor, stars as Shang-Chi in the movie. Liu was previously in a Netflix show called Kim’s Convenience and plays the character, Jung. Alongside him is Asian-American actress, Awkwafina playing Katy Chen. Awkwafina has been in movies such as Crazy Rich Asians and Ocean’s 8.

The Asian representation in this movie is extremely meaningful to many Asians everywhere. In the movie there’s even Chinese dialogue. Simu Liu is an inspiration to many dreamers. Finally, Asians have a superhero that looks like them, who is relatable to them. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is the beginning of more Asian representation in the movie industry.