Despite our current global situation forcing Marvel Studios to reschedule their upcoming slate of Phase 4 movies (Black Widow should have hit theaters last Friday, for example), the future Marvel Cinematic Universe is still chock full, as the next few years will see the release of about a dozen projects, both in theaters and on Disney+.
One of those upcoming projects, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, is set to be one of the MCU’s most unique outings yet, as it will be the first major superhero franchise to feature characters of Asian descent.
Shang-Chi was supposed to be dropping next February, however — like the rest of Marvel’s films — it was delayed a handful of months and will now hit theaters in May. The delay hasn’t toned down fan anticipation, though, as Fandom Wire was recently able to get their hands on the details of the basic plot.
Shang-Chi has a special power in this film, and because of it, he was raised in an orphanage for kids that are trained to fight. This special orphanage is run by The Mandarin. Shang-Chi eventually escapes the school/prison and begins living on the run, trying to stay out the Mandarin’s clutches his entire life.
The Mandarin does eventually find the grown-up Shang-Chi again, and offers him a chance. The Mandarin promises Shang-Chi money and power, along with a promise that he’ll finally stop chasing him if he will fight in an epic and magical tournament that every kid in the orphanage has been training for their entire lives. Whoever wins this tournament gets the legendary 10 Rings, which grants even more power, which clearly The Mandarin wants. However, The Mandarin is currently too old to fight so he enlists Shang-Chi.
The tournament will have new characters from all corners of the MCU that include wizards, aliens, fighters, and well known comic book characters which we don’t want to spoil. Imagine a Marvel-infused Mortal Kombat movie!
In this film, Shang-Chi’s special power is the ability to clone himself while fighting. This is a slightly different approach to a power he had in his more recent comics run. [Fandom Wire]
Fans of the MCU will recall that this is not the first time “The Mandarin” has popped up in the franchise, as the character was originally used as a bait-and-switch back in Iron Man 3, which saw Ben Kingsley pretend to be the infamous Marvel villain only to later reveal that he was just an actor named Trevor Slattery.
Originally scheduled to be released on February 12, 2021, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings will now hit movie theaters in the United States on May 7, 2021.
Eric is a New York City-based writer who still isn’t quite sure how he’s allowed to have this much fun for a living and will tell anyone who listens that Gotham City is canonically in New Jersey. Follow him on Twitter @eric_ital for movie and soccer takes or contact him firstname.lastname@example.org