With Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings close to starting production, anticipation for the kung fu superhero has been mounting from all quarters. Perhaps from none moreso than the film’s director, Destin Daniel Cretton, himself.

Cretton is best known for character-driven dramas such as Short Term 12 and the upcoming Just Mercy – both of which coincidentally star MCU actors, specifically Brie Larson in the former and Michael B. Jordan in the latter. But he had no issue switching gears to a big-budget action feature for one very important reason.

Shang Chi: Representation Matters

shang-chi and destin daniel cretton

The renowned director explained that reason in a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, where he said:

“I grew up without a superhero to look up toI gravitated to Spider-Man when I was a kid, primarily because he had a mask covering his face and I could imagine myself under that mask. I would love to give my son a superhero to look up to. I feel very privileged to be a part of telling that story.”

Considering that MCU boss Kevin Feige claimed that Shang-Chi‘s cast would be “98% Asian” in another interview, it sounds like Cretton picked the right project for his son.

Now one of the biggest questions left is what storylines the film will adapt, and whether they’ll incorporate the Mandarin as Shang-Chi’s father. Most fans already assume that’s the case, especially as it will serve to ameliorate the big mess that Iron Man 3 made of Mandarin’s character. It’ll certainly be an exciting father-son relationship to share with the kids.

Are you looking forward to Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings? Let us know in the comments below.