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Simu Liu Recalls Time He Ignored Marvel’s Secretive Casting Process

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings star Simu Liu admits that he’s “not a great secrets guy” and defied Marvel’s secrecy to reveal his casting.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings star Simu Liu admits that he defied Marvel’s strict casting secrecy when he was first selected as the Marvel superhero. Liu, who previously came to the public’s attention playing Jung Kim in the CBC sitcom Kim’s Convenience, began his early career as an extra and a stuntman. In July 2019, Liu had landed the leading role as Marvel’s martial arts superhero and his casting was officially announced at San Diego Comic-Con by Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige just days later.

Based on the Marvel comic character of the same name, work on a Shang-Chi film had begun as early as 2001, but serious work had only commenced when screenwriter Dave Callaham was hired in late 2018. Director Destin Daniel Cretton joined the project in March of the following year, and work immediately began on trying to find the film’s lead. Marvel Studios were intent on finding an actor of Chinese descent, and in addition to screen-testing Liu, they had also auditioned Mortal Kombat’s Lewis Tan as well. Ultimately Liu landed the role on July 16, 2019, just four days before the official announcement was made on July 20.


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It would seem those four days were not long enough for Liu, however, and he recently admitted to spilling the beans about his casting to his best friend before the official announcement was made. While speaking with Variety, Liu conceded that he’s “not a great secrets guy,” and that it was “too big of news to keep with you.” Check out his full comments below:

I’m not a great secrets guy, when it comes to this stuff. [Kevin] was like, ‘We’re gonna fly you to Comic Con in San Diego in four days, just keep your mouth shut until then. We want to be able to surprise the whole world when we announce you at Comic Con, like, don’t ruin the moment.’ And I was like, ‘Yeah, yeah, sure.’

He was like, ‘No seriously, don’t tell your parents, don’t tell your friends. Don’t tell anyone.’ I was like, ‘Yeah, yeah, yeah.’ And then I immediately called my best friend. It’s too big of news to keep with you.

Shang Chi preparing to battle.

With 28 films already under their belt and at least 11 more in development, as well as a growing number of connected Disney+ series, the secrecy expectations surrounding Marvel projects are well known. While some MCU actors such as Tom Holland have had their fair share of difficulties keeping certain news under wraps, most stars are quite good at keeping big secrets. Late last year, Kingsley Ben-Adir, who is set to appear in the upcoming Secret Invasion series, even intimated that the studio actively trains its actors to avoid revealing spoilers.

Thankfully, at least for Liu, it would seem that his best friend was better at keeping secrets than he was, and news of his casting did not leak any further before it was officially revealed by Feige. One can only imagine the trouble he would have gotten himself into if it had. With any luck, Liu has learned his lesson, and he will be far more adept at keeping details about the sequel to Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings to himself.

Next: All 12 MCU Movies Releasing After Moon Knight (& When)

Source: Variety

  • Thor: Love and Thunder (2022)Release date: Jul 08, 2022
  • Black Panther: Wakanda Forever/Black Panther 2 (2022)Release date: Nov 11, 2022
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  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (2023)Release date: May 05, 2023
  • The Marvels/Captain Marvel 2 (2023)Release date: Jul 28, 2023

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