Simu Liu: ‘I might be tweeting things in the future which will be absolute idiocy’

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I am only vaguely familiar with the search for Shang-Chi. When the film, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, was announced, I remember Twitter had people throwing their names in the ring and fans offering dream-casting suggestions. I mainly remember because my friend was one of the names being bandied about. So, I vaguely remember when Simu Liu sent this now famous tweet out:

I barely knew who Simu was but when I read that tweet, I assumed it was a foregone conclusion he was a front-runner for the part. I completely bought into his confidence. After reading this USA Today article, I found out this was just a flex on his part! He figured what the hell, and threw it into the universe. However, having a magic Twitter account isn’t going to stop him from using his social media for good, like standing up for his beliefs, or for fun. And sometimes, Simu said, it might be just pain “idiocy.”

Before “Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” there was Simu Liu and the Legend of That One Tweet.

In December 2018, Liu had “like 500 followers” when the Chinese Canadian star read that a movie about Marvel’s resident master of kung fu was being fast-tracked for production. Not thinking anyone would listen, he decided to shoot his shot anyway: “OK @Marvel are we gonna talk or what.”

“I just tweeted it out into the ether because I love superhero movies,” Liu, 32, says now. “It’s great that I’m getting all the credit now retroactively for getting it right, but I’m sure there are thousands of tweets if you go back far enough of me not getting it right or predicting the future totally incorrectly.”

“I don’t think anybody at Marvel saw that tweet,” admits “Shang-Chi” director Destin Daniel Cretton. “It’s a great story so I’m not gonna try to stamp it out. But I also really do believe in putting things out there and saying you’re going to get this thing and really going for it.”

He’s written essays about recent anti-Asian racism and violence, publicly criticized the “overwhelmingly” white “Kim’s Convenience” producers and recently fired off a tweet slamming Disney CEO Bob Chapek for suggesting the theatrical release of “Shang-Chi” will be an “experiment.” (Liu says he didn’t catch any internal flak: “I just wanted people to know that I was fired up about it.”)

“If it’s true that I wouldn’t have had a career if it weren’t for these conversations about diversity, the importance of representation, then I need to continue to fight that battle for the people that come after me,” Liu says. “All around me, I saw people who were taught by their parents, as I was, to just toe the line, not ruffle the feathers, not rock the boat too much and just put your head down, do your work and that’s it. And I think that as a community, we’re reaching the limitations of that kind of thinking.”

Liu’s Twitter “will always be a roller-coaster ride,” he promises. “I might be tweeting a lot of things in the future, some of which will be absolute idiocy.” But being an Asian star in the Marvel universe is what really holds “special significance” for him.

[From USA Today]

I like both versions of the story, whether Marvel read the tweet or not. I think a lot of people feel the need to put things out there for a variety of reasons. I burn things to release them into the universe. That way I don’t have to say them aloud and I can see them float away in the sparks and smoke. All in my head or not, it works. The message, of course, is that Simu took his shot. I hope Shang-Chi is a big hit. It just had its premiere and the reviews are good. It opens Friday so we’ll see what audiences say. As for Simu and the idiocy on his Twitter, I hope he keeps it up. He’s got a lot of good activism on his page, but he’s pretty entertaining, too:

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Photo credit: Avalon Red, Twitter and Instagram

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22 Responses to “Simu Liu: ‘I might be tweeting things in the future which will be absolute idiocy’”

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  1. CommentingBunny says:

    I saw Shang-Chi last night. SO GOOD! I absolutely loved it.

    Also, on a shallow note …. go for Simu Liu’s abs, but stay for Tony Leung’s eyes. He is so damn attractive.

  2. Snuffles says:

    I’m excited to see this movie but no way in hell I’m entering a movie theater to do so. I’ll have to wait 5 weeks for it to reach Disney +.

  3. OriginalLala says:

    I’ve been a big fan of his since Kim’s premiered on CBC so it’s pretty cool to see his career take off like this! Go Simu!

  4. Courtney B says:

    I saw it last night and it was really good. And he’s the first character to be introduced since Dr strange who didn’t have another long time MCU star with him. Black panther was introduced in Captain America civil war, the new Spider-Man in the same. So that was a big burden. Plus, since black widow was set in the past, and the tv shows are set post Thanos period but with familiar characters , this is really the first test of the new MCU in terms of character and story both. And I don’t think the MCU needs to worry.Tony Leung, who plays the father and antagonist, was awesome. Really stole everything. And can really wear a suit. Good chemistry between Liu and awkwafina who are bffs in the movie. Excellent choreography. I thought liu was very good, not excellent, but definitely seemed comfortable in the role and the fight scenes and the banter. A little weaker in the dramatic scenes with Leung. Great use of cgi. Strong emotional component. Great little surprises and stingers which the MCU is always excellent at.My major complaint was that the fight scenes,no matter how gorgeous (particularly the one between Leung and the actress who plays his wife when they meet) were a bit long and on the repetitive side. There were a LOT of them. Not to be unexpected in a movie about martial arts but there was a lot of interpersonal going on that I’d like to have seen more of given it was an origin movie. I’d give it a solid A-/B+. My whole family liked it a lot.

  5. keroppi says:

    I can’t wait to see this movie! I don’t know if I will brave a theatre for it, but I want to support it.

    I loved him on Kim’s Convenience and it’s fun watching his star rise! Go Simu!!

    BTW – he was on the Jimmy Kimmel show and he is a really good interview.

  6. Mimi says:

    I really wanna see shang-chi this weekend hoping my friend can come if not I’ll go alone! 😁🤷

  7. Mimi says:

    The grandchildren tweet LOL 🤣

  8. AmelieOriginal says:

    I’m taking this post as my permission to gush about Kim’s Convenience because Simu is in it so it is totally related hehe, I recently started binge watching it on Netflix. I am sad I only have a few episodes left in season 5 which I know is the last season as the show was recently cancelled due to some internal showrunner/production issues (nothing to do with ratings, the show was a hit on the CBC, the Canadian channel it aired on). I had been recommended the show awhile back and had avoided watching it but I’m not sure why. It is such a good show, I absolutely love it, it has so much heart and I can’t recommend it enough to everyone. If you loved Simu in this movie (which I totally plan to see but once it’s on streaming and will probably just rent from Amazon Prime), definitely check out Kim’s Convenience! He’s great in it as is the rest of the cast, especially the actors who play the parents. I really wish Netflix would save it and give it a final season (it had already been greenlit for season 6 when season 5 was airing, that’s how successful it was!).

    I recently started following all the actors from Kim’s Convenience on Twitter and Jean Yoon who plays Umma (the mom) tweeted about how she went to see the movie in Canada with her own son “Heading to the theater with my son to see my TV son kick butt!!” It was so cute. The whole cast of Kim’s is so proud of him for being in Shang Chi which is great to see how they have his back despite the not so great way the show was cancelled. I’ve been noticing in interviews how NO American outlets ask him about Kim’s Convenience and he doesn’t bring it up too much because I guess American audiences aren’t super familiar with it? Which is too bad because it SO GOOD.

    • keroppi says:

      Unfortunately, the main writer, Ins Choi, holds the rights to the story and he is the one who left. So it is not saveable by a network, if I understand correctly. A lot of fans were asking the same thing when it originally got cancelled.

      • AmelieOriginal says:

        That’s too bad! I understand it was based on a play and I have no idea what happened but to leave the show abruptly without giving the cast a heads up first (I think they found out through the media) is just not okay. I feel like if they gave the show to Netflix and ensured there was actual Korean representation among the writers (which I understand was not the case before the show was abruptly cancelled), they could give the show a great ending. Instead, they go ahead and give one of the only white cast members her own spinoff show.

    • Alarmjaguar says:

      Just wanted to second this, it is a great watch – though I’m still in Season 3, so not totally sure how things began to change (regarding why people got upset).

  9. Jess says:

    I love him. He’s great on Twitter, I love his fearlessness and humor (the grandkid tweet is fantastic), and he was great on Kim’s Convenience too. Hecate, I like your idea of writing things down and burning them – I need to figure out how to say what I truly want and manifest it.

  10. Betsy says:

    I very seriously read through his pronunciation guide to the Chinese names – lots of names from lots of cultures are still new to me and I struggle with pronouncing them correctly – and I really puzzled over that last one for a beat too long.

  11. Twin falls says:

    I love his sense of humor and energy and that he already/still cares about trying to make things better. Everything a super hero should be.

    Sucks (for me) they didn’t release this to stream.

  12. North of Boston says:

    That last pic, though!

    Cute dog + Average Dude immediately ups the appeal of that dude.

    And as Dodger and his person Chris Evans have demonstrated, Cute dog + Good Looking Dude ramps the dude’s attractiveness to the stratosphere!

    That is absolutely the case here with Simu and his pup. :)

  13. Roo says:

    Just saw the movie tonight and I loved it! Might be my favorite Marvel movie, actually! He was wonderful, but Awkwafina was my surprise favorite. 😁

  14. Dizzy says:

    I wasn’t going to watch this movie until I found out Tony Leung is in it. My big crush from the 90s. This guy has the yearning, sad eyes down to an expertise. Love him in the Wong Kar Wi movies