"There is an audience for our stories"
Crazy Rich Asians star Awkwafina has discussed Shang-Chi and the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Good Morning America.
It was recently announced that Kim’s Convenience star Simu Liu will take on the role of Shang-Chi in the upcoming superhero film. Awkwafina and Hong Kong film actor Tony Leung will star alongside him, with the latter playing villain The Mandarin.
Whilst her role has yet to be disclosed to the public, Awkwafina said she was “really, really proud and honored to be a part of [Shang-Chi].”
“I found out relatively recently about it, and I was floored,” she revealed. “I couldn’t believe it, and I met with Destin [Daniel Cretton], who will be directing us, and he’s just an incredible dude with such an insane vision.”
The Asian American actress went on to discuss the impact the film will have on its audience.
“Shang-Chi is going to mean a lot to people,” she said. “It’s going to mean a lot for where we’re going and for my community as well.”
“I think we’re getting a lot of firsts in the past couple of years, and I think that there is an audience for our stories,” she added. “It’s going to mean a lot for the generations to come to have a hero like that.”
Talking about her co-star Liu, Awkwafina said he was an excellent choice to play the lead. “He really represents, I think, what a lot of people want to be proud of,” she said.
Discussing Marvel Cinematic Universe expanding inclusion of lead female actresses, Awkwafina said it was an “obvious” step.
“It seems obvious because a lot of the heroes in my life are women too, and I think that we’re entering a phase right now where we are realizing that we represent a lot of this country and that it’s important to show that we have power as well,” she said.
“I think that I’m a part of something that I hope will make a lasting change not only in this industry but as we progress as a society,” she added. “I really hope that that carries on and that people will continue to do it.”
Awkwafina is currently starring in The Farewell, which overtook Avengers: Endgame‘s per-theatre box office average.
In related news, Liu recently bought out an entire cinema for a screening of The Farewell to support Awkwafina.