-While many of his fans are happy for him, not everyone is amused by the news. On Weibo, Chinese netizens are criticizing Leung for accepting the antagonist role who is said to be inspired by the controversial character Fu Manchu. On Weibo, #TonyLeungChiu-waistarringnewMarvelfilm quickly accumulated 410 million views and spawned nearly 64,000 posts.
-"To give a little bit more context on the character, Fu Manchu is a villain character created in 1912 who has become an archetype of the evil criminal genius and mad scientist. The character made his debut in Marvel comics in 1973 and is widely seen as a racist take on the Chinese by Westerners."
-In the comic, Fu Manchu is the father of Shang Chi and is a racist caricature of a Chinese person that highlights Yellow Peril (a xenophobic hysteria targeting Asians arriving in the United States during the 19th and early 20th centuries).
-"Weibo users note the film's plans to pit Shang-Chi against the Mandarin instead of Fu Manchu swaps out one offensive Chinese stereotype for another. The Mandarin was similarly depicted as an East Asian caricature representing the communist Chinese menace when he originally appeared as an Iron Man villain."
-"This complaint is compounded by Weibo users observing that popular Hong Kong actor Tony Leung has been cast as the Mandarin, while Shang-Chi actor Simu Liu is Canadian, rather than a Chinese citizen."
-Simu Liu is an unknown actor in China said entertainment industry analystn Wu Zhaojie. Said that Leung is one of the few Chinese stars whose work is recognized by Western audiences as Marvel films are shot for a global market.
Why China is angry about Marvel's first Asian superhero movie https://t.co/ZjiJYHrETV— Quartz (@qz) July 23, 2019
basically the origin story of shang chi includes fu manchu which is like a huge anti-chinese symbol & the makers of the movie said they're gonna change the story to make it less racist but lots of people are still mad and it looks like they're calling for a boycott eventually ._. pic.twitter.com/phRtY4KmY1— iris (@janeandthor) July 22, 2019
Tony Leung as The Mandarin is a brilliant cast because it will ensure that this villain role will be multifaceted & not stereotyped. And I am so glad Marvel has banished Fu Manchu & all that racist baggage. #ShangChi pic.twitter.com/sDmtmridwU— Nancy Wang Yuen (@nancywyuen) July 22, 2019
Sources: 1 I 2 I 3 I 4 I 5