Fans are just under three weeks away from meeting a new Marvel Studios hero.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings will mark the first time audiences are introduced to a completely new hero since 2015's Ant-Man. While both Doctor Strange and Captain Marvel debuted in their respective solo films, both were alluded to in previous movies. Like Scott Lang, Shang-Chi is bursting onto the scene with zero setup whatsoever.
Even though Shang-Chi will lean primarily on its new stars, the martial arts flick is set to feature a number of familiar faces. That said, a concerning opening weekend projection has some worried about the film's box office potential. Disney CEO Bob Chapek has referred to the film's imminent numbers as an "interesting experiment," to which leading man Simu Liu did not take kindly.
Regardless of expectations and speculations, support for the MCU's latest installment is reaching a thunderous pitch.
SHANG-CHI HAS THOR'S SUPPORT
A new Marvel legend is rising, and his future teammates are here for it.
Taking to Instagram, Thor actor Chris Hemsworth shared a new Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings TV spot that showcases the titular hero alongside footage of Iron Man, Captain America, and Thor iconography. Hemsworth professed his anticipation for the flick in the post's caption.
"Welcome to the MCU Shang-Chi! Can’t wait to see this. It’s going to be epic! Out September 3rd #ShangChi @marvelstudios."
Hemsworth's post came hours after star Simu Liu announced that pre-orders for Shang-Chi tickets had opened. Alongside the link to reserve tickets, Liu emphasized his desire to "make history" with this film's theatrical run.
"Pre-orders have opened. Help us make history on September 3rd!!!"
A THUNDEROUS STAMP OF APPROVAL
While in-house support is expected, it's always refreshing to see the Marvel Cinematic Universe stars supporting each other's projects.
Chris Evans professed his excitement for The Falcon and the Winter Soldier when the first trailer dropped during Disney Investor Day, showing his support for his former castmates. Hemsworth's enthusiasm for Shang-Chi comes in a similar vein, even though the God of Thunder has yet to share the screen with the Master of Kung Fu.
Hemsworth's social post may be just the first of many to show support for Shang-Chi. Last week, early box office projections had the martial arts flick at a concerningly low domestic opening weekend haul. With a little under three weeks before it hits theaters, Marvel Studios may be looking towards their established stars to help drum up anticipation for their first theatrically-exclusive film in over two years.
LIU RALLIES MARVEL FANS
It is usually a given that Marvel Studios films make money, but unprecedented times have erased that guarantee.
In 2019 alone, Marvel Studios produced three billion-dollar movies, the franchise's most lucrative year of all time. After a year away from the box office, the MCU returned with Black Widow, which had an impressive opening weekend, but fell off hard afterward. Shang-Chi does not have the Disney+ crutch like its MCU predecessor, meaning it is completely reliant on the box office for its profit.
It's long been known that Simu Liu is in a "pinch me" mindset when it comes to his Marvel casting. His social media presence emphasizes how grateful he is to be part of the MCU. Rather than sitting back and hoping for the best, Liu has taken initiative to ensure his debut flick has a performance that is reflective of the blood, sweat, and tears he poured into the production.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings hits cinemas on September 3.