‘The Matrix Resurrections’ star reveals which ‘Shang-Chi’ role they turned down

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
Image via Marvel Studios

The questions over what exactly constitutes Marvel Cinematic Universe canon these days has become murkier than ever in Phase Four, even though we’re less than a year into the latest stage of the unstoppable franchise’s expansion.

Vincent D’Onofrio and Charlie Cox will be the MCU’s Kingpin and Matt Murdock, as we already know. They both starred on Netflix’s Daredevil, which Kevin Feige said wasn’t official canon. Clark Gregg is adamant that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is an active part of the mythos, which doesn’t appear to be the case after Hawkeye confirmed Laura Barton as Agent 19, who was previously played by Adrianne Palicki.

It’s all a little messy, then, but that’s got nothing on Jessica Henwick. Having played Colleen Wing on Netflix’s roster of Marvel shows, the actress was invited to audition for the role of Xiu Xialing in Shang-Chi of the Legend of the Ten Rings, which she turned down to pursue The Matrix Resurrections instead, which was partly because she couldn’t bring herself to shut the door on Colleen as she divulged to SyFy.

“That definitely did come up in the discussion. If I did [Shang-Chi], I would effectively be putting Colleen to bed. It wasn’t the main factor, but it definitely came up in conversation. I love Colleen. She changed my life. Of course, if I was given the opportunity to revisit her, I would, but I just don’t know how likely that is.

The Matrix Resurrections might be uneven and choppy as hell, but Henwick is one of the ensemble’s standout performers. If Feige is keen to keep picking and choosing his returnees, then Colleen is the only Iron Fist veteran you’d imagine the fans would be receptive to.