Simu Liu, the star of Marvel’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, has been making headlines the last few days for his Instagram post in response to Disney chief Bob Chapek’s comments about the movie being an “interesting experiment”. Sarah will cover that story later, after we’ve seen the film (we are both scheduled to screen it today – I CAN’T F-CKING WAIT I AM SO EXCITED I MIGHT CRY), so we’re tabling that issue for now because… well… all I want to do here with this post is celebrate.
The Shang-Chi Hollywood premiere happened last night. An all-Asian red carpet to promote a blockbuster superhero movie happened last night. So we’re only doing joy right now. How could it be anything but joy?
Here’s Simu, on the biggest night of his career so far, looking super fine in a black suit belted Asian styles, skin smooth and glowing, 100% the main character of this story, at one with his character in this story. As he says in the promo, “I’m ready”:
You’ll note too that this clip opens with Iron Man and Michelle Yeoh’s voice. “You are a product of all who came before you”, referring of course to Shang-Chi’s backstory but also to Marvel’s backstory, directly linking their new superhero superstar with the superhero who started this ride and turned it into the mega property it’s become. Shang-Chi is the torchbearer now.
For Simu, then, imagine the weight of that expectation, the pressure, the nerves. It has to be stressful. And yet, to go back briefly to that Instagram post…
…at the most critical point in his career, Simu, who has always been outspoken, is not playing it conservative. He’s swinging for the fences. He is not taking the safe route. Rather, he’s determined, no matter what the result, to experience it as he is, because you should win as yourself and you might as well lose as yourself too.
More on the Shang-Chi premiere through the day.