The Marvel Cinematic Universe is massively popular all over the world, as evidenced by a combined box office haul that’s set to pass $23 billion by the end of today thanks to Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings obliterating the current records for Labor Day weekend, but it still hasn’t been approved for release in China.
Every single MCU installment since The Avengers has earned at least $100 million in the country, and it’s the franchise’s second biggest market globally behind the United States and Canada. However, the effects of the pandemic have seen the Chinese censorship board whittle down the number of Hollywood productions allowed to screen locally, with Free Guy just the third such title to premiere since June.
On the surface, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings has the potential to do huge business in China, but it’s not quite as straightforward as it may seem. Despite the presence of homegrown A-listers Tony Leung and Michelle Yeoh, many fans voiced their disapproval that the comic book blockbuster’s cast was largely stacked with American and Canadian nationals, even if they’re of Chinese descent.
Kevin Feige then had to outline in great detail that Leung’s Wenwu was a million miles away from the outdated and offensive stereotypes of the Mandarin that were prevalent in the comic books, but that still hasn’t been enough to convince the body in charge of approving foreign releases to give the green light for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings‘ theatrical release.