The Marvel Comics kung fu hero Shang-Chi is getting his own MCU movie, but could he show up much earlier with an appearance in Spider-Man: Far From Home? It's been reported that Godzilla and Wonder Woman 1984 writer David Callaham will pen the script for Marvel's first Asian-led superhero film, Shang-Chi.
With the Iron Man and Captain America films presumably coming to an end after Phase 3, Marvel appears to be looking to replace them with all-new franchises to accompany sequels to Spider-Man: Homecoming, Guardians of the Galaxy, Doctor Strange, and Black Panther. Black Widow and The Eternals are currently in development, which will add two new franchises to the MCU in Phase 4. Shang-Chi is the latest to be added to the list, giving the MCU its first martial arts superhero movie.
As a writer is already attached to Shang-Chi, fans are already wondering who will direct the film and who Marvel will cast as the titular Master of Kung Fu. However, there's a chance that Shang-Chi has already been cast, and could make his MCU debut as early as next year. In August, Crazy Rich Asians star Remy Hii was cast in Spider-Man: Far From Home in an undisclosed role. So far, there's been no word on what character Hii will play in the film, with none of the film's many set photos providing clues.
It's worth noting that Hii underwent martial arts training for the role of Prince Jingim in the Netflix kung fu series, Marco Polo. As a result of that and his Malaysian Chinese descent, Hii has been an actor fans have been interested in seeing play Shang-Chi, long before the actor was expected to appear in Spider-Man: Far From Home.
Shang-Chi showing up in Spider-Man: Far From Home could be a good move for Marvel. While Shang-Chi is arguably one of Marvel's most recognizable Asian superheroes, he's far from a household name and isn't even Marvel's most popular martial arts character (that would be Iron Fist). Having him appear in the sequel to an $880 million box office hit is a great way to introduce him to audiences and get him ready for his solo movie.
It's rather hard to say how the Master of Kung Fu would factor into a Spider-Man film, although the comic book do leave some clues. While Shang-Chi's stories usually consist of battles with kung-fu-themed villains, the character has often crossed over into the superhero genre proper by occasionally teaming up with characters like Spider-Man and Captain America. A few years ago, Shang-Chi even became Spider-Man's kung fu teacher at a time where Spider-Man had lost his Spider-Sense and needed martial arts to compensate for the loss of one of his most important abilities. This connection between Spider-Man and Shang-Chi could be adapted to film, especially since the MCU Spider-Man could benefit greatly from Shang-Chi's skills.
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019