Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings had its first trailer hit the screens on Monday helping to get a first glimpse at what this new addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe had to offer. Frankly, it looks pretty amazing and will usher in a decidedly cool martial arts vibe to the universe. But with it came a little bit of controversy around its star Simu Liu. It didn’t take long for the internet detectives to dig up some negative tweeting by the actor and use it to start a cancel party on him.
The tweets in question from Simu Liu, who will play the titular Shang-Chi come from all the way back in 2012. They are unlikely to spark a lot of controversy among the general public but have struck a chord with a certain subset of folks, namely Nicki Minaj fans. That group wants the actor to pay for his social media transgressions stemming from him making fun of the performer and her fanbase.
To see where some of this backlash is coming for Simu Liu, you’ll have to settle for just what the original tweet said because it’s already been deleted from his account. This is how it read at the time though:
Obviously, this is almost much ado about nothing and though it takes a low blow at the singer, it’s mostly just trying (and mostly failing) to be humorous. It really doesn’t even make all that much sense, but again, it’s also not all that big of a deal. There were probably just better jokes in there somewhere. If I’m offended at all by Simu Liu here, it’s just from a comedic perspective.
There was a group of fans who were quick to go to bat for Simu Liu online and who came to his defense around his nearly decade-old comments. They were having none of it, not wanting to get mired in what will surely be a big moment when this film hits.
Simu Liu is set to make a major debut of sorts in the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. The first trailer detailed some of the action we could be gearing up for with this next film. It will be part of the larger franchise but will start by existing within its own story. In it, the titular Shang-Chi is the son of The Mandarin, the head of the violent crime syndicate the Ten Rings. They are named for the rings from which the Mandarin derives his superpowers. The story will follow Shang-Chi rejecting the calling to enter this group of criminals and it sets him at odds against both his father and the group as a whole.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings will hit the screens in early fall. As part of Marvel’s Phase Four, it will likely begin to work the character into the larger narrative arcs of the studio. But to start, Simu Liu will head up a more insular film that acts as an origin story for the character. I think it’s safe to say though that Nicky Minaj fans might be staying away.