Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is set to introduce a new Marvel hero while also shedding some light on the origins of the mysterious villain known as the Mandarin.
Directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, the film will serve as the MCU's first foray into the realm of martial arts, and it will be led by Kim's Convenience star Simu Liu who will play the titular hero. Alongside Simu, Shang-Chi will feature a predominantly Asian ensemble, with Awkwafina, Meng’er Zhang, Michelle Yeoh, Fala Chen, Ronny Chieng, and Tony Leung rounding out the cast.
Plot details are still being kept under wraps, but it is expected to be a family affair due to the fact that Shang-Chi and the Mandarin have a father-son dynamic in the film. Marketing for Shang-Chi revealed a glimpse of that conflict, seemingly teasing an emotional final battle at the movie's endgame.
Now, another preview of the family ties of Shang-Chi has been revealed in a new image.
A FRESH LOOK AT SHANG-CHI
Fandango released an official still from Marvel Studios' Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, showcasing a special look at Simu Liu's titular hero, Awkwafina's Katy, and Meng'er Zhang's Xialing standing together and looking slightly concerned at what's in front of them.
THE MAIN TRIO OF MARVEL'S SHANG-CHI
It was confirmed that Simu Liu's Shang-Chi and Meng'er Zhang's Xialing are siblings in Legend of the Ten Rings, meaning that the pair will likely form an alliance to stop their powerful father. This image could be a glimpse of one of the dangerous missions of the duo, with Awkwafina's Katy being tangled with the conflict due to her friendship with Shang-Chi.
The trio is heavily featured in Shang-Chi's marketing, and this could hint that they will be together for a good chunk of the film. This means that the main mission will involve the trio, thus leading to an eventual confrontation with the Mandarin and the dangerous Ten Rings organization.
Based on what's been revealed so far, it's possible that Xialing will recruit Shang-Chi first due to the request of Tony Leung's Wenwu a.k.a. Mandarin. However, upon the discovery of her father's illegal activities, it's reasonable to assume that she will betray him to help Shang-Chi and Katy escape from the Ten Rings' clutches.
The context of this outdoor scene might've been teased already from Simu's previous social media post. Last year, the actor posted a video of him executing a somersault in a field on a massive exterior set that was built for Shang-Chi.
It's a village location, which could mean that Shang-Chi and his allies will look for something or someone inside in the area. This might be the first hint that the Ten Rings is missing in the film, and Shang-Chi's connection to this artifact could be the key to finding the powerful weapon.
Of course, this is all pure speculation considering that there is still a lot of unknown variables surrounding the plot of Shang-Chi. Still, there's a strong chance that a major twist like this will be involved when the film arrives in theaters on September 3, 2021.