Marvel’s ‘Shang-Chi’: Potential Casting Call Hints at Direction of Film

Out of all the upcoming Marvel Cinematic Universe films, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, is one of the most anticipated. New, alleged casting calls that have surfaced may reveal new details about the direction and plot of the film.

Kevin Feige, Daniel Deston Cretton, Simu Liu
President of Marvel Studios Kevin Feige, Director Destin Daniel Cretton and Simu Liu of Marvel Studios’ ‘Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings’ at the San Diego Comic-Con International 2019 | Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney

What we know so far about ‘Shang-Chi’

Earlier versions of a Shang-Chi project stalled in development for almost two decades. After the unparalleled success of the MCU, namely the diversity shown in Black Panther, the film was first announced in December 2018, with reports that Marvel was fast-tracking it. Destin Daniel Cretton is the director and Dave Callaham is the writer.

Later, Simu Liu was cast in the title role, Tony Leung was cast as supervillain The Mandarin, and Awkwafina was cast in an undisclosed role.

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Plot details are scant right now but the Ten Rings organization, a terrorist group in Marvel canon, has been referenced in several MCU films, especially those dealing with Iron Man.

Potential characters in ‘Shang-Chi’

According to the fansite MCU Cosmic, four villains could be in the film: Steel Claw, Moving Shadow, Razor-Fist, and Ghostmaker.

Another site, POC Culture, got a hold of a potential casting call list that also refers to Steel Claw, so at this point, it may be a sure bet that the character in the film.

The list on POC Culture in full lists:

Steel Claw was described as a 20s-40s male with an intimidating presence

11 year old boy – Chinese. Speaks English and Mandarin is a plus. Computer hacker.

10 year old boy – Chinese. Speaks Mandarin. Martial artist.

7-8 year old boy – Chinese. Speaks fluent Mandarin. Martial arts ability a plus.

4-5 year old girl – Chinese. Mandarin speaking ability a plus.

10-12 year old girl – Chinese. Athletic. Speaks Mandarin and English. Martial arts ability a plus. 

13-15 year old boy – Chinese. Speaks Mandarin and English. Martial arts ability a plus.

What could this mean for ‘Shang-Chi’

As for Shang- Chi, we already know that The Mandarin is likely the principal villain due to the fact Leung’s casting was announced early on. However, there will clearly be other villains in the mix, so it will be interesting to see how they all are written in the film.

Also, with all of these potential roles for young teens and children, it looks like there will have to be some sort of schooling or training storyline. As most of them are required to have martial arts skills, that should be a huge factor in the film as well.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings will hit theaters on Feb. 12, 2021.