Marvel's Shang-Chi won't feature Fin Fang Foom to avoid a political “minefield”

The upcoming Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is an important milestone in MCU diversity. Marvel's new movie will feature the MCU's first Asian lead, a step forward for the franchise's diversity.

The character of Shang-Chi was created in the 70s, during the height of Chinese cinema in the US. As such, the original comics tended to add hyperbole to a lot of Asian content. For the upcoming movie, a lot of the original canon has been altered to be less offensive.

Shang-Chi will alter some offensive content

In an interview with NBC, Shang-Chi actor Simu Liu explained some of the alterations that will take place. For starters, the character’s father is now known as Wenwu instead of the older canon of Fu Manchu. The name of Fu Manchu has been a controversial topic for many decades, ever since 1940. Another character that won't appear – or will be renamed – is the mystical dragon Fin Fang Foom.

“Some questionable elements from the source material, like the shape-shifting dragon-like being puzzlingly named 'Fin Fang Foom,' do not make an appearance in the movie," the article says.

Simu Liu went on to explain that the creators of the new movie have not shied away from cutting things:

"We knew that we were potentially navigating a minefield, especially when looking at this property that was created by two white men in the 1970s at the height of the kung fu craze. We have not shied away from ripping out whatever doesn't work in 2019, 2020, 2021."
"From the moment that Marvel Studios decided that there needed to be a voice for Asian characters and a lead Asian character in the space of the [Marvel Cinematic Universe], they have all kind of considered what the best way was to incorporate a story that both celebrates Asianness and all of its wonderful dimensions, and its facets and its nuances, and also celebrates martial arts."

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings releases on September 3rd, 2021.

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