The Multiverse continues to expand in the MCU Phase 5 slate with Ant-Man 3, introducing the warrior Variant of Kang the Conqueror before the villain becomes the next ultimate big bad for the franchise.
Kang already made his influence felt upon a number of characters in the MCU, including in both seasons of Loki and Ant-Man 3, with the potential to impact other stories like Deadpool 3 and Fantastic Four thanks to his expertise with the Multiverse.
But recently, fans have pondered over another potential connection between Kang and an early Phase 4 hero, Shang-Chi, based on some imagery utilized in Kang's first full movie.
MCU Producer on Kang/Shang-Chi Connection Rumors
Speaking on the D23 Inside Disney podcast, Marvel Studios VP of Production & Development Stephen Broussard discussed a possible connection between Kang the Conqueror and Shang-Chi's rings from Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, which has also been the subject of an MCU rumor.
Inside Disney asked about how "some of the rings had writing on them" when looking at Kang's energy sphere in Ant-Man 3, comparing it to the writing on the Ten Rings.
This ties back to a recent rumor indicating that the Ten Rings, as well as Kamala Khan's bangle from Ms. Marvel, are connected and will serve an important purpose in the Multiverse Saga.
This rumor noted that they'll be two of the pieces tying the MCU's upcoming Kang-centric storyline together the way that the Infinity Stones did in the Infinity Saga. Subsequently, many fans have drawn connections between these artifacts and the rings seen with much of the technology at Kang's disposal.
Broussard called it "kind of a tricky question to answer," explaining that he doesn't want to tease anything in case fans read too far into his comments:
"I wouldn’t read too much into it at this point. I’m afraid that’s kind of a tricky question to answer, because if I’m like, ‘Stay tuned,’ you might read more into that, you know? But, when we made 'Quantumania,' it was just about that."
He denied any connections between the artifacts though, making it clear that the job was to make this movie "a standalone idea" rather than looking for it to connect to something else down the road:
"Any connectivity down the road, I can’t really speak to, because I don’t really know where that’s heading. But it’s a standalone idea for this more than whatever is in stage for another 'Shang-Chi,' should that happen, or 'Kang Dynasty.' It was purely the milieu of this movie."
How Will Kang Evolve as MCU Evolves?
While it's still unclear if Shang-Chi's Ten Rings will play into Kang's evolution later in the Multiverse Saga, excitement is building to see how Kang's presence throughout the Multiverse is going to expand to new heights.
Shang-Chi is rumored to be one of the leading characters in Avengers 5, with the post-credits scene from his movie setting up plenty of mystery surrounding the origins of the Ten Rings.
This should mean that fans will get more information on the Ten Rings and their origins eventually, whether they end up connecting more closely to Kang or not, particularly with Kang also being seen as the protagonist of the next Avengers film.
Avengers: The Kang Dynasty will debut in theaters on May 2, 2025. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is currently streaming on Disney+.