Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...

Marvel just explained a surprising link between ‘Shang-Chi’ and ‘Iron Man’

Published Aug 2nd, 2021 4:03PM EDT

If you buy through a BGR link, we may earn an affiliate commission, helping support our expert product labs.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

is the most puzzling Marvel movie launching this year. That’s because its ties to the MCU aren’t immediately clear to fans. Then again, Shang-Chi wouldn’t be the first Marvel movie to introduce new heroes and new story threads that will then be intertwined with the main storyline. But the film seems dissociated from the MCU, given what we know so far. Marvel can’t have that, and the studio’s Shang-Chi marketing is looking to establish clear connections to the rest of its Cinematic Universe. Marvel already showed us two major cameos in a blink-and-you-miss-it scene from a recent trailer. But now it has gone ahead and released a featurette that spells it all out for us. Shang-Chi is directly connected to the film that started it all, Iron Man. That’s quite a spoiler, but one Shang-Chi needs right now.

Why is Marvel revealing Shang-Chi spoilers?

What makes an MCU movie so amazing are the Easter eggs that will tie it to other movies and TV series. But with each new MCU movie that introduces a new superhero or team of heroes, Marvel needs to make sure people know the new characters are part of the same overarching MCU story.

Trailers and featurettes allow Marvel to give MCU fans the information they need to realize that Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is a must-see film in theaters. That’s probably why Marvel revealed that Abomination (Tim Roth) and Wong (Benedict Wong) will appear in the film. These are two massive cameos that Marvel confirmed in a trailer a few weeks ago. Marvel fans who saw all the movies will recognize at least one of the characters, if not both.

These cameos might be enough to sell Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings to more people.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
Abomination and Wong fighting in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings trailer. Image source: Marvel Studios

However, if that’s not enough, then having Kevin Feige speak about Shang-Chi’s connection to Iron Man should do the trick. The Marvel Studios boss appeared in a new featurette for the film and explained precisely how the new film ties to Iron Man. That’s the iconic film that allowed Marvel to embark on this massive MCU journey more than a decade ago.

The big Iron Man connection

Here’s what Feige says about Shang-Chi and Iron Man in the new clip:

We’re going back to the very beginning of the MCU. We have a keystone event and that event is Tony Stark becoming Iron Man. He’s forced to build these weapons for an organization, and that organization was the Ten Rings.


And there was this wonderful character that we really wanted to do something with someday, and that was Shang-Chi. […]


The backstory of Shang is really unique, in that he discovered that his father was this evil overlord.

Just like that, by revealing a few minor spoilers, Marvel’s top exec made Shang-Chi far more appealing. The film has a palpable connection to the MCU that anyone can understand. Feige even told us how Shang-Chi fits in the grander MCU chronology.

Sure, we had the “Mandarin” (Ben Kingsley) in Iron Man 3, but that connection might not be immediately clear to MCU fans who have not read the comics. And you might not remember that the Ten Rings kidnapped Tony Stark in Iron Man. But we’re about to meet the real Mandarin (Tony Leung) come September 3rd when Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings premieres.

It’ll be interesting to see whether Marvel will reveal other Shang-Chi spoilers in the month ahead. Feige and Co. might have linked the film to Iron Man, but we have no idea what Shang-Chi (Simu Liu) did while the Avengers were saving the day over the past decade.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

Latest News