Shang-Chi: Marvel film sets new all-time record in the US

Shang-Chi: Marvel film sets new all-time record in the US


Despite the pandemic, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings managed to set an all-time record in the United States last weekend. The United States celebrated Labor Day weekend, which in this country is comparable to Labor Day in May. The Marvel film was able to bring in around 71.4 million US dollars on these days alone, clearly surpassing the previous record.

This previously belonged to the horror film Halloween from 2017, which was 30.6 million US dollars implemented on Labor Day weekend. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings has more than doubled the record and exceeded all previous expectations. Experts assumed that the 25th feature film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe would gross between 45 and 50 million US dollars when it launched in the United States. Worldwide, Shang-Chi has reached a total of 146.2 million US dollars since its launch on Thursday. The film has not yet been released in China - a large market is therefore still missing. The MCU strip is also at the top of the charts in Germany. 180,000 visitors saw the film over the weekend in Germany.

In July, a Marvel film, Black Widow, was released this year. The solo project with Scarlett Johansson has grossed US $ 372.2 million worldwide. Unlike Shang-Chi, Black Widow was published in parallel on Disney +, which makes a direct comparison difficult. Fans don't have to wait too long for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings at Disney +. The film should be available to all subscribers on the streaming platform just 45 days after its cinema release.

Source: Deadline

Why ‘Shang-Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings’ means so much to Asian Americans like me

CLEVELAND, Ohio — The phrase “representation matters” has become so ubiquitous in today’s discourse, it almost doesn’t mean anything. In fact, the word “matters” at the end of any cause is a trigger for half the population to ignore the expression or scoff at it with disdain.

That’s why “Shang Chi and The Legend of Ten Rings” is so huge. The film, which smashed the Labor Day box office record over the weekend, humanizes and gives power to an idea that many, particularly those that belong to the majority, haven’t been able to grasp for centuries.

Being seen means everything.

“Shang Chi,” the 25th installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is the first superhero movie with an Asian American lead. Just as important, it was made with a predominantly Asian cast and creative team.

Growing up as a first-generation Asian American in a nearly all-white suburb of Cleveland, movies starring people that looked liked me were few and far between. None of them told stories that I could relate to. In their films, Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan spoke broken English and their “otherness” was intrinsic to the plot. Most of the time, we were portrayed as old wise men, villains or nerds. Long Duk Dong may have gotten the girl in “Sixteen Candles,” but he didn’t do us any favors.

Instead, the movies aspired me to be Han Solo or Daniel LaRusso. As a kid, fitting in was a means of survival. Fitting out meant drawing attention to yourself, which only led to getting bullied and into fights. This quasi-rejection of my Filipino culture manifested itself in a number of ways: refusing to attend Tagalog classes like my parents wanted, feeling ashamed when they brought chicken adobo and a rice cooker into Cedar Point, changing my given name of José to Joseph in grade school because it sounded too ethnic.

This experience isn’t unique among Asian Americans. In fact, it’s a major part of “Shang Chi.” When the movie starts out, the character, played by “Kim’s Convenience” star Simu Liu, is estranged from his family, living in San Francisco and going by the name Shaun. His best friend, Katy (Awkwafina, TV’s “Nora from Queens”), is even more out of touch with her heritage. She can only speak ABC (American Basic Chinese), is embarrassed by her Chinese name and dismisses her mother’s benchmarks of success seemingly out of spite.

Granted, the circumstances of Shang-Chi’s self-imposed exile are unlike any of us have faced in real life. None of us, after all, have the baggage of a 1,000-year-old warlord with magical rings that give him incredible power as a father. Still, his struggles over who he is vs. who he wants to be feel accurate and relatable.

Shang-Chi and Katy are both stuck in the middle. Not Asian enough to please our elders, not American enough to know their place in the world. It’s not until they’re drawn into this grand adventure full of jaw-dropping action sequences, thrilling fight scenes and even “Game of Thrones”-style dragons — this is a Marvel film lest not we forget — that they each come to embrace both sides of their identity and realize their full potential.

For Asian Americans, “Shang Chi” is our “Black Panther” or “Wonder Woman.” For the first time in a movie of this scale, we can look up at the big screen and see faces that look like us and who have experienced the same kind of obstacles we have are indeed capable of superhero-level greatness. The impact of that is immeasurable.

Perhaps equally important, “Shang Chi” succeeds in dismantling the yellow peril stereotype that has skewed the perception of Asians in this country for a long time. The ruthless Asian villain has long been one of the most pervasive and laziest tropes in pop culture history, from “Flash Gordon”'s Ming the Merciless to “Goldfinger”'s Oddjob, racist caricatures whose evilness is baked into their appearance. Not that Marvel had any choice but to confront it. Of course, an Asian superhero film has to have an Asian villain. Moreso, in the comics, Shang-Chi’s father is actually based on Fu Manchu, a presence so engrained in the movie in our collective mind we don’t need to know its origins to know what it looks like or stands for.

Instead, “Shang Chi” flips the script, giving us Hong Kong screen legend Tony Leung as Xu Wenwu, one of the most complex villains in the MCU, as power-thirsty as Thanos and as nuanced as Killmonger. He is seduced by the magic of the Ten Rings, but gives it all up to be with Leiko (Fala Chen), Shang-Chi’s mother. It’s not until he suffers the incredible loss of her and the abandonment of their children that he sets upon a dark path once again. Leung’s compellingly tragic performance makes Wenwu more sympathetic and human than pure evil.

Over the past 18 months, we’ve witnessed former President Donald Trump’s divisive rhetoric turn into attacks against Asians by misguided people looking for a convenient scapegoat for the COVID-19 pandemic. But “Shang Chi and The Legend of Ten Rings” isn’t going to fix racism. It’s not even the first film this decade to tackle old stereotypes and feature Asian American voices telling their own stories. “Crazy Rich Asians,” “The Farewell” and “Minari” did the same, their feet much more grounded in reality. But none had the reach of Marvel, the biggest movie franchise in history.

That’s what makes the cultural significance of “Shang-Chi” extraordinary. In the long-term, the film’s success means to expect more from Asian creatives like director Destin Daniel Cretton and screenwriter Dave Callaham in the future. Liu, Awkwafina and Meng’er Zhang, who plays Shang Chi’s sister Xialing, already have their tickets punched for future rides aboard the MCU train.

The immediate impact has been the incredible amount of joy and pride the film has brought to the millions Asian Americans who never had a superhero to call their own or, frankly, who had just had a sh---- year. Here’s hoping “Shang-Chi,” amid all of the exciting mayhem and fantastical spectacle onscreen, has also created a sense of empathy and better understanding among those who never had to think twice about what “representation matters” really means.

Marvel’s “Shang-Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings” is now playing in theaters