'Shang-Chi' Star Simu Liu Tells Disney CEO: 'We Are Not an Experiment'

Simu Liu
Simu Liu

Albert L. Ortega/Getty

Simu Liu is ready to make history when Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings hits theaters next month on Labor Day weekend.

The Chinese-Canadian actor, 32, posted an impassioned statement about the film on social media on Saturday, which appeared to be in response to a recent comment by Disney CEO Bob Chapek.

"We are not an 'interesting experiment,'" Liu began.

"We are the underdog; the underestimated. We are the ceiling-breakers. We are the celebration of culture and joy that will persevere after an embattled year. We are the surprise," the actor wrote. "I'm fired the f— up to make history on September 3rd; JOIN US."

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Liu's post, which included behind-the-scenes photos from the upcoming Marvel blockbuster, was met with praise from friends and fans. "Let's f—in' goooooo," wrote Good Trouble star Sherry Cola. "I'll be there!" Crazy Ex-Girlfriend's Vincent Rodriguez III commented. Chrishell Stause also responded with the "100" emoji.

The Shang-Chi star's statement came after Chapek reportedly called the movie's release "an interesting experiment" during Thursday's Q3 earnings call. The Disney exec may have been referring to the 45-day window during which the movie will be exclusively available in theaters before it streams on Disney+.

Chapek went on to call the release "another data point" after releasing such films as Jungle Cruise, Black Widow, and Cruella simultaneously in theaters and on Disney+ Premier Access during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is making history as the first installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe with an Asian lead and a predominantly Asian cast. It's a welcome form of representation amid rising hate crimes against the AAPI community during the pandemic.

Liu previously spoke to PEOPLE about making history in the MCU and joining the Avengers. "I'm excited and I think for all of the good and the bad of what's to come, it's definitely a journey that I feel very privileged to be going on," he said in May.

"I know how much it would've meant to kids and to myself as a kid seeing this when I was younger. I totally understand the importance of it," Liu added. "I know that it's not going to be easy, but at the same time, I feel so incredibly excited to be a part of this movement that gets to push society forward... It gets to deepen the conversation, it gets to normalize seeing Asian faces on screen and hearing Asian voices and our stories."

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Liu plays Shang-Chi, a skilled martial artist, who has been trained as an assassin since childhood. After leaving the Ten Rings organization to pursue a normal life in San Francisco, he's forced to confront his past once again. Liu stars alongside Awkwafina, Michelle Yeoh, and Benedict Wong.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is in theaters on Sept. 3.