Marvel’s new Shang-Chi, Simu Liu, spoke his historic casting into existence.
The Chinese-Canadian actor, 30, was announced as Marvel’s pick for the role of the kung fu master in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings at Saturday’s panel at San Diego Comic-Con.
The upcoming film marks Marvel’s first feature with an Asian lead.
Liu stepped out onto the stage and began to speak in Chinese, teasing fans, “Did you guys get that?”
“Literally, guys, I was cast on Tuesday and I was screen testing on Sunday,” Liu said. “This is the craziest, craziest dream. I can’t describe how I feel right now.”
While it may be surreal for Liu, he’s been reaching out to Marvel since July 2014 when he tweeted, “Hey @Marvel, great job with Cpt America and Thor. Now how about an Asian hero?”
Liu responded to his five-year-old tweet on Sunday, writing, “LOL.”
LOL— Simu Liu (@SimuLiu) July 21, 2019
He also resurfaced a tweet he wrote on December 2018 when he tweeted at the iconic studio with, “OK @Marvel, are we gonna talk or what #ShangChi.”
Liu retweeted that tweet on Saturday after the announcement was made, writing, “Well s—.” In another tweet, he wrote, “Thanks for getting back to me.”
The actor is best known for his role as Jung Kim on the CBC Canadian sitcom Kim’s Convenience. He has had credits on Fresh Off The Boat, Orphan Black, Slasher and Bad Blood among other series.
Awkwafina was also announced to be cast in the film, although she wasn’t present in Hall H. Liu tweeted, “Now that the craziness is over, the work begins. There is so much at stake here; we are fighting for our identity, for our right to be seen, to BELONG.”
Now that the craziness is over, the work begins.— Simu Liu (@SimuLiu) July 21, 2019
There is so much at stake here; we are fighting for our identity, for our right to be seen, to BELONG.
Eternally grateful to Marvel, to Kevin, Jonathan and Destin for this gift. @awkwafina LET’S GET TO WORK BABYYYYY!!!
He added, “Eternally grateful to Marvel, to Kevin, Jonathan and Destin for this gift. @awkwafina LET’S GET TO WORK BABYYYYY!!!”
The film will also star Tony Leung and be directed by Destin Daniel Cretton (Short Term 12).
Scarlett Johansson also made an appearance to show footage from her upcoming Black Widow movie, while Natalie Portman surprised fans after Taika Waititi announced she would play the female Thor in Thor: Love and Thunder.
The biggest surprise and cheers came when Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige announced Mahershala Ali would play Blade in a reboot of the franchise.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is scheduled for release on Feb. 12, 2021.