Marvel Studios offered a first look at its upcoming “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” film by releasing a teaser trailer Monday morning. The movie highlights Simu Liu’s Shang-Chi in what will be the Marvel Cinematic Universe‘s first Asian-led film.
The trailer features a voiceover from Wenwu (Tony Leung), the hero’s father. Shang-Chi was trained to be Wenwu’s apprentice, but he gave his son 10 years to lead a normal life. With the decade over, he insists that it is now time for Shang-Chi to join him in the Ten Rings organization.
The trailer shows scenes of Shang-Chi’s martial arts training growing up mixed with shots of his everyday life — some of which feature Awkwafina, who plays Shang-Chi’s friend Katy.
The movie is set for a Sept. 3 theatrical release. “Shang-Chi” was originally scheduled for release earlier this year on Feb. 12 till the COVID-19 pandemic hit and shifted the timeline for Phase 4 of the MCU.
According to Marvel Studios, filming on “Shang-Chi” wrapped in December 2020 and was then slated for a July 9 release. That date has since been reserved for the “Black Widow” film, which will be available to watch in theaters and on Disney Plus with Premier Access.
A Birthday Surprise for the Superhero
The trailer’s release was a shock to many including the film’s lead. On Twitter, Marvel Studios posted the trailer with a birthday greeting to Liu. Liu himself replied to the post in disbelief.
In a separate tweet that re-shared the trailer, Liu said the teaser trailer’s made today “THE BEST BIRTHDAY EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
Along with the teaser trailer, Marvel also released the first teaser poster for the film, offering a close-up look at Shang-Chi’s costume. Liu shared the photo on Twitter himself, offering it as a gift to others on what is his 32nd birthday.
Introducing Shang-Chi to the MCU
The movie will formally introduce Shang-Chi to the MCU. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Liu mentioned that introduction is something he looked forward to while taking on the role:
The most exciting thing about stepping into this character was that his backstory has never been told before. We know so many different versions of Batman’s origin story, how his parents were murdered when he was very young. We know Peter Parker, who was bitten by a radioactive spider, and he loses his uncle. Shang-Chi’s story is very much unknown to most of the world, so we had a lot of freedom and creative liberty to make it the way that we wanted to.
Producer Jonathan Schwartz also told Entertainment Weekly that the comics’ arc of family drama in the Shang-Chi comics helped inspire the direction of the film. The movie will explore the “really dark, even abusive family background” that affects Shang-Chi.
However, while Shang-Chi will be making his first appearance in the MCU, the Ten Rings mentioned in the movie’s title has ties to the first “Iron Man” movie. Vanity Fair reports that the Ten Rings organization is the same name of the Middle Eastern terrorist group that kidnapped Tony Stark, which led to the creation of the first Iron Man suit.