‘Shang-Chi’ director wants Jackie Chan in the sequel
And Spider-Man's Filipino best friend, Jacob Batalon, on representation
“Almost half of all Asian roles serve as a punchline, study finds.”
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🏆 The Headlines
Michelle Yeoh’s Multiverse — A24 releases the Everything Everywhere All at Once trailer seeing Michelle Yeoh as a woman discovering her importance in a multiverse adventure. Yeoh leads an ensemble cast that includes Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings' Stephanie Hsu, James Hong, Jonathan Ke Quan, Jamie Lee Curtis, Jenny Slate and Harry Shum Jr. The film revolves around Evelyn, an exhausted Chinese-American woman who can't seem to finish her taxes and in the process finds out about the reality of the multiverse and her part in a prophecy to protect all of humanity.
With great power comes great responsibility. Spider-Man’s Jacob Batalon reveals when he realized the impact his character, Peter Parker’s best friend Ned, has on the Asian community.
Jacob Batalon is Hawaiian-born and the son of Filipino parents, and he caught his big break at the age of 21 with the release of Spider-Man: Homecoming. Along with bringing some hilarious moments to the MCU Spider-Man films, seeing a character like Ned Leeds be best friends and take part in some of the action with Spider-Man has been a major moment of on-screen representation for Filipino boys and men and the larger Asian community.
“I think that personally people thought that I was just going to be like another token character in the films and not necessarily have a bigger part. And so at the beginning, I didn't really understand it. And then as soon as people started messaging me about being an inspiration and talking about how they're being seen and represented and heard for the first time, that meant a lot.”
Manifesting this. “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” director Destin Daniel Cretton just opened up the possibility of adding Jackie Chan to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
In a recent interview with CinemaBlend, the 43-year-old filmmaker picked the martial arts icon as the legendary Asian actor he’d love to cast in the “Shang-Chi” sequel. “I mean, if we could ever get Jackie [Chan] into a movie that would be a lifelong dream of mine,” Cretton was quoted as saying.
Cretton previously shared in an earlier interview that the first film’s aesthetic was influenced by “every Jackie Chan movie ever made.” Fight coordinator Andy Cheng and late stunt coordinator Brad Allan, who both worked with Chan on several films, crafted the fight sequences in “Shang-Chi.”
Representation in The Matrix. “The Matrix Resurrections” will be released in theaters and on HBO Max on Wednesday, Dec. 22. It takes place in an apocalyptic future where robots have become sentient and have imprisoned the human race into a computer program called the Matrix, so their bodies could be harvested for energy.
In recent years, headlines have come out that positioned Reeves, whose father was Chinese Hawaiian, as a person of color. “I don’t know if I agree with that statement. But I don’t not agree,” he admits. At the same time, though he’s rarely spoken about his ethnicity, Reeves does consider himself Asian. “My relationship to my Asian identity, it’s always been good and healthy. And I love it,” he said with a smile. “We’ve been growing up together.”
Similar to the previous movies in the franchise, “Resurrections” blends Japanese anime and Chinese kung fu films, with a contemporary action-adventure sensibility. It also takes tenants from Eastern and Western philosophies and religions, with Neo having been interpreted as a Christ figure and as Siddhartha leading his followers to Enlightenment.
🎬 Industry Insider
Awkwafina and Sandra Oh to star as sisters trying to pay off their mother’s gambling debts in comedy film (Next Shark)
Universal’s ’47 Ronin’ Gets a Facelift With Female-Skewing ‘Blade’ (Variety)
More industry news including job opportunities from Netflix, NBCUniversal, Paramount Pictures and more below 👇