Simu Liu Responds After Quentin Tarantino Says Marvel Actors Are 'Not Movie Stars'

Simu Liu, Quentin Tarantino
Simu Liu, Quentin Tarantino

Mike Marsland/WireImage; Gareth Cattermole/Getty

Simu Liu isn't holding back.

On Tuesday, the Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings star, 33, shared his thoughts that the era of movie-stardom "was white as hell" in response to recent comments made by Quentin Tarantino on the "2 Bears, 1 Cave" podcast. (Tarantino said that movie stars have disappeared due to the "Marvel-ization of Hollywood.")

"If the only gatekeepers to movie stardom came from Tarantino and Scorsese, I would never have had the opportunity to lead a $400 million plus movie," Liu wrote in a Twitter post, also referencing director Martin Scorsese's now-famous 2019 comment that Marvel Cinematic Universe movies are "not cinema."

"I am in awe of their filmmaking genius. They are transcendent auteurs," Liu wrote on Twitter, adding that auteur directors like Tarantino "don't get to point their nose at me or anyone."

"No movie studio is or ever will be perfect," Liu, who is expected to reprise his role as Shang-Chi in at least two upcoming MCU films, wrote on Twitter. "But I'm proud to work with one that has made sustained efforts to improve diversity onscreen by creating heroes that empower and inspire people of all communities everywhere."

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Liu finished his post with a simple point about how times have changed in Hollywood.

"I loved the "Golden Age" too.. but it was white as hell," he wrote on Twitter.

In Tarantino's recent podcast appearance, the Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood director said that while MCU actors grow famous playing superhero characters, "they're not movie stars," according to Mediaite.

"Captain America is the star. Or Thor is the star," Tarantino said of MCU films during the appearance. "I mean, I'm not the first person to say that. I think that's been said a zillion times, you know, but, you know, but it's like, you know, it's these franchise characters that become a star."

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The director said during the conversation with podcast host Tom Segura that his "only ax to grind against them is they're the only things that seem to be made."

American director Quentin Tarantino at Rome Film Fest 2021. Quentin Tarantino Red Carpet. Rome (Italy), October 19th, 2021
American director Quentin Tarantino at Rome Film Fest 2021. Quentin Tarantino Red Carpet. Rome (Italy), October 19th, 2021

Massimo Insabato/Archivio Massimo Insabato/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Quentin Tarantino

"And they're the only things that seem to generate any kind of excitement amongst a fan base or even like for the studio making them," he added. "That's what they're excited about. And, you know, so it's just the fact that they are the entire representation of this era of movies right now."

About 30 minutes after Liu shared his thoughts on Twitter, the actor posted that he was "bracing for loser internet trolls" along with a GIF image of himself preparing for a fight in Shang-Chi.

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Other Hollywood directors who have expressed a distaste for superhero movies in recent years include Ridley Scott, Jodie Foster, Jane Campion, Roland Emmerich and Terry Gilliam.

In August 2021, Liu told PEOPLE that calling his rise to fame as the lead of Shang-Chi "a dream come true" would be "such a huge understatement" as he spoke about his lifelong love for Marvel characters.

"I used to love watching Marvel movies when I was a kid, even before, pre-MCU," he told PEOPLE at the time. "If there was a superhero, I wanted to watch it. This is all I've ever wanted."