We’re less than a week out now from the release of Shang-Chi And The Legend Of The Ten Rings, Marvel’s latest effort to keep the MCU kicking along in the face of both COVID and the aftermath of Avengers: Endgame. (You can read our full review right here.) And while Shang-Chi has no dearth of talent—including Tony Leung, Michelle Yeoh, and Awkwafina—much of the focus on the film’s lead-up has, understandably, fallen on star Simu Liu, who went from petitioning for the part on Twitter a few years back to actually starring in his own Marvel blockbuster.
Not that that rise, which saw Liu move from the (apparently highly contentious) set of his Canadian sitcom Kim’s Convenience to headlining a multi-million dollar action spectacular, is any reason to rest on one’s laurels, apparently; Liu has his eyes on taking Shang-Chi all the way to the top of the MCU pecking order. “I know what’s on my mind is the same as what’s on everybody else’s mind,” he said in an interview this week with The Hollywood Reporter, “And hopefully, there’s an Avengers in the future, somewhere.”
It’s now been two years since the most recent (possibly final?) (but definitely not final) Avengers movie, the record-obliterating Endgame, with Marvel itself poking some light fun at the whole “Who can replace Cap and Iron Man?” question with the marketing for its upcoming Eternals. For what it’s worth, Liu also makes it clear that he has no future knowledge of any of Kevin Feige and co.’s future plans, noting that “All of the media frenzy that surrounds one of those properties is going to be a whole beast unto itself,” and that “We’re just so focused on pushing this movie out to the world and making sure people watch it.” (Wherever it’s safe to do so in theaters, he considerately noted.)
Outside those future ambitions, Liu also detailed the circumstances during which he got Feige’s call about his casting—“I had just woken up from a nap, and I was in my underwear, eating shrimp crackers”—and touches on his early days in the acting trenches, from getting slathered in blue paint to play an extra in Pacific Rim, to getting apparently just brutalized by a bunch of tweens while playing a birthday party Spider-Man with a less-than-convincing Spidey Suit: “I really don’t blame a lot of the children for not believing that I was the real Spider-Man and just doing everything that they could to prove that I was not the real Spider-Man, including but not limited to: punching, kicking, grabbing and trying to rip the suit,” Liu said. “There are still a lot of very traumatic memories from that time.”