“First we got China’s first Disney princess, and then we got China’s first Marvel hero!”

Marvel is searching for a Chinese actor to play Shang-Chi

Variety reports that Marvel is currently searching for a Chinese actor to star in upcoming superhero film Shang-Chi.

Justin Kroll, a reporter for Variety, tweeted that Marvel “is putting out test offers for a group of men in their 20s for its SHANG-CHI movie.”

Kroll added that the comic book film company is specifically looking for a Chinese actor and not any other Asian actor.

“Marvel have also been adamant to reps offering up their clients for the role that they have to be of Chinese ancestry no other Asian ancestry excepted [sic],” he added.

When Shang-Chi was first announced, some in China thought the film was racist, drawing likeness to Fu Manchu. However, Chinese fans have been rejoicing at the announcement that a Chinese actor will take on the lead role.

Although Twitter is not accessible in China, the message still went viral across Chinese social media platform Weibo. “Shang-Chi casting” has been viewed over 100 million times and “Marvel’s first Chinese hero” has had 590 million views.

One Chinese media outlet wrote, “first we got China’s first Disney princess, and then we got China’s first Marvel hero!”

Actors including Eddie Peng, Zhang Jin, Wu Jing, Ashton Chen Xiaolong, Li Xian, Jackson Wang, Leo Wu Lei and Liu Haoran have all been suggested by Chinese fans.

Shang-Chi, AKA Master of Kung Fu, is a Marvel Comics character created in 1972 who eventually joins the Avengers. The character had his own series that ran for 125 issues and had a love interest with Deadpool’s ex, Domino.

The film will be directed by Destin Daniel Cretton and will be part of MCU Phase 4.