‘Shang-Chi’: Director Destin Daniel Cretton Confirms Post-Blip Setting & Talks Cinematic Inspirations

Shang-Chi & The Legend of The Ten Rings will be the next big character introduction to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It also ushers-in one of the few Asian-led Hollywood blockbusters and could help nudge studios to take more of an active role in giving more opportunities to Asian casts/filmmakers to tackle action-adventure films.

Director Destin Daniel Cretton has spoken with Fandango about Shang-Chi, confirming that the film “is set in the present day in the MCU timeline” post-Blip. He gave an indication of what audiences should expect from the new film’s genre.

“I think Shang-Chi is a cross between a classic kung fu film and a family drama, but it’s also really funny.”

When Destin Daniel Cretton was asked about cinematic inspirations for the superhero film, the filmmaker’s answers were certainly interesting. Especially, the nod to Good Will Hunting.

“One of the very loose inspirations for tone and character was Good Will Hunting, which may be a surprise. Will Hunting is a character that I think has a lot of similarities to Shang-Chi, just in that they have a big secret and they have a lot of baggage that they have to learn to deal with in order to step into their fully realized shoes. Some of the other inspirations… every Jackie Chan movie ever made, the Ip Man series — there’s a big inspiration from Jet Li’s Tai-Chi Master, and, of course, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. There is a long list. I cannot not give enough props to Kung Fu Hustle, which is one of my favorites. We watched a lot of these classic movies to make sure that we were paying proper respect to them and to the long history of martial arts and kung-fu movies that came before us.”

The shout-out to Kung Fu Hustle is curious since Destin recently posted an image of himself and the film’s star Yuen Wah in Sydney, Australia in 2020 on Instagram (see below). The actor co-starred alongside Jackie Chan and Michelle Yeoh (confirmed for a role) in the fantastic Supercop aka Police Story 3 in the role of Panther. Early on in his career, Yuen Wah appeared in Bruce Lee movies such as Fist of Fury, Enter The Dragon, Way of The Dragon, and Game of Death.

UPDATE: Michelle Yeoh has posted an image on Instagram of Yueh Wah, in costume on the set.

Could the famed martial arts actor be appearing in Shang-Chi?

Shang-Chi will hit theaters exclusively on September 3.

SHANG-CHI & THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS – Marvel Studios’ “Shang-Chi and The Legend of The Ten Rings” stars Simu Liu as Shang-Chi, who must confront the past he thought he left behind when he is drawn into the web of the mysterious Ten Rings organization.

Joining Simu Liu in the Marvel cast includes Tony Leung as Wenwu, Awkwafina as Shang-Chi’s friend Katy, and Michelle Yeoh as Jiang Nan, as well as Fala Chen, Meng’er Zhang, Florian Munteanu, and Ronny Chieng. Shang-Chi and The Legend of The Ten Rings is directed by Destin Daniel Cretton and produced by Kevin Feige and Jonathan Schwartz, with Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, and Charles Newirth serving as executive producers. David Callaham & Destin Daniel Cretton & Andrew Lanham wrote the screenplay for the film, and experience it in theaters on September 3, 2021.


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