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marvel’s first asian superhero movie|why they’re angry about it?

china, one of marvel studios’ largest overseas markets, does not appear to be happy about the comic-book empire’s first asian superhero production.

marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

 

weibo users responded to marvel’s san diego comic-con announcement that it had cast chinese-canadian actor simu liu as shang-chi, the kung-fu master hero of shang-chi and the legend of the ten rings, by reminding one another of the racist origins of the character’s father.

 

marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

© image | google

the plotline of shang-chi is about belittling chinese people while praising americans,” wrote one user on the social media platform. another called it “horrible” that the movie will include “a symbol of foreign discrimination against asians.”

 

marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

© image | google

in the comics, shang-chi’s father was a super-villain called fu manchu, who spends most of his time plotting evil schemes of world domination. 

 

marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

© image | google

in the movie version, hong kong actor tony leung will play a villain known as the mandarin. fans are speculating that the film’s antagonist is likely a substitute for fu manchu—long seen as a “yellow peril” symbol historically linked to racist beliefs of asian peoples and cultures being a threat to the west.

 

marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

© image | google

fu was first created by british author sax rohmer in the early 1900s. with stereotypical physical features and an outfit mimicking those worn by officials from china’s qing dynasty, fu was licensed to marvel and featured as the evil father of shang-chi in comics including the hands of shang-chi: master of kung fu in the 1970s.

 

marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

 

despite marvel’s move to replace fu in the movie with the mandarin, a classic villain in iron man who also has chinese origins, china’s internet users don’t appear to be convinced by the difference between the two.

 

marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

© image | google

the point here is not whether the mandarin is exactly fu manchu or just his replacement, the point is both characters emerged because of the discrimination and stereotyping of the chinese population in the previous years. back in the 1900s us chinese were too weak to fight back characters like this, but now, we have become strong and have the ability and obligation to say no to such figures,” wrote (in chinese) a weibo user with the handle “souththth.”

 

another comment upvoted over 10,000 times accused marvel of casting a chinese actor (leung) as the villain, while an ethnically chinese actor (liu) with western heritage gets to play the hero: “if you’d like to make money in china, the better shape your chinese characters more wisely.” 

the topic “shang-chi” has been viewed more than 70 million times with 60,000 posts discussing it on weibo. many commenters are calling for a boycott of marvel—and even tony leung for accepting the role.

 

marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

 

global times also weighed in:

 

marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

© image | twitter

with the global movie audience outside of the us growing, marvel—as well as other hollywood powerhouses—have started to produce more features that center on non-white characters.

 

in 2018, the studio’s black panther, which featured an almost all-black cast, grossed $1.3 billion globally.

 

marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

© image | google

yet despite some huge successes, studios still find themselves struggling to appeal to audiences in different countries with movies released worldwide. 

 

the american romantic comedy crazy rich asians, celebrated in the us  as a model for inclusiveness and representation of asian americans, was widely viewed in china and elsewhere in asia as promoting outdated caricatures. 

 

it was a flop in china.

 

 

 

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marvel's first asian superhero movie|why they're angry about it?

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omg! 6-year-old korean youtuber earns $ 50 million/year!

a six-year-old youtuber from south korea is making headlines after buying a five-story property in one of the most affluent neighborhoods in seoul.

 

boram, who stars in two youtube channels, boram tube vlog and boram tube toysreview, has a combined viewership of nearly 32 million subscribers, making her one of the most famous youtubers in the country.

omg! 6-year-old korean youtuber earns $ 50 million/year!

© image | youtube

on tuesday, the local maeil business newspaper reported that boram family, her parents’ company, bought the five-story building in cheongdam-dong, gangnam for a whopping price of 9.5 billion won ($8.02 million).

 

according to the outlet, a certified copy of the real estate register reveals that the family had purchased the 258.3-square-meter (2,780.32-square-foot) property on april 3, gaining sole ownership over it.

 

boram, who started posting videos only last year, now boasts more than 10 billion views from both channels, according to analytics website social blade.

 

omg! 6-year-old korean youtuber earns $ 50 million/year!

© image | youtube

boram tube vlog has estimated monthly earnings of up to $3.6 million (up to $42.7 million a year), while boram tube toysreview has estimated monthly earnings of up to $779,700 (up to $9.4 million a year).

 

omg! 6-year-old korean youtuber earns $ 50 million/year!

© image | youtube

boram tube vlog primarily features snippets of the six-year-old’s daily life, including fun challenges, dressing up, cooking, eating and plenty of playing.

 

meanwhile, boram tube toysreview features quite the same content, albeit with more toy reviews especially in its first few months.

 

omg! 6-year-old korean youtuber earns $ 50 million/year!

© image | youtube

 

news of the family’s purchase, however, revived past accusations of child abuse against boram’s parents.

 

in september 2017, save the children’s local chapter pressed charges against her guardians, claiming that they were “gaining financial profit by putting the children in situations that could put them under mental distress and distributing the footage to the public, with a negatively influence on underage viewers who watch the clips,” the korea herald noted.

 

omg! 6-year-old korean youtuber earns $ 50 million/year!

© image | youtube

the videos in question, which have since been made private, show boram stealing money from her dad’s wallet, destroying her favorite doll and pretending to be in labor.

 

the seoul family court upheld the charity’s claims and ordered protective disposition to the six-year-old’s parents.

my china diaries: how china changed my life!

i have been living in china for the past three years, when i first chose to come here my family accepted it immediately but the thoughts they had in mind about china were not what i saw after coming here. 

 

my china diaries: how china changed my life!

sidney mangenda tshiaba visits the bund in shanghai. [photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

 

my china diaries: how china changed my life!

 

i thought that i knew what to expect: pollution, poverty, and piracy, but not the seafaring kind. instead, in those first few months, i explored hangzhou, beijing, and shanghai under apec blue” skies and discovered cities becoming centers for innovation. 

 

my china diaries: how china changed my life!

© image | google

i had a lot to learn. i have spent three years studying and traveling around china for pleasure. from the mountains of sichuan to the ice of harbin, from the heaving metropolis of shanghai to west lake in hangzhou. 

 

i have witnessed the grit of determination and the limitless ingenuity of people who want nothing more than a better life for their families and themselves. 

 

i know i can’t be politically correct about everything i say but i have seen a country that has done miracles in the past few decades and lifted about 600 million people out of poverty in just a few years. in just a span of five years, the economy grew by 2.8 trillion dollars. 

 

my china diaries: how china changed my life!

© image | google

the chinese opened their country but the people still remain closed to outsiders.

 

four decades ago, while kids in western countries were at the movies mesmerized by luke skywalker’s destruction of the death star, whole swatches of the chinese population were living hand to mouth. 

 

but a revolutionary idea was taking root in china’s barren economic soil, an idea that would change the lives of hundreds of millions of people in unimaginable ways. 

 

my china diaries: how china changed my life!

 

what was this revolutionary idea? well, it was nothing less or more than what we all know today as “reform and opening up“. 

 

for sure, reform and opening up has brought about perhaps the greatest social and economic miracle that the world has ever seen. but today, about 30 million people in china still have to get by on less than the equivalent of $1 per day. what’s being done to help them? what should be done? what can be done?

 

my china diaries: how china changed my life!

© image | google

from tilling the earth to gazing at the stars, some are faced with problems as old as civilization and others are looking at problems never before encountered on the face of this earth. 

 

in just 20 years, china’s manned space program has gone from big dreams to a very real plan to have a fully operational space station in orbit by 2022. in just 40 years, a nation of farmers has become the hypermarket of the world and a crucible of scientific and commercial advance. 

 

my china diaries: how china changed my life!

© image | google

with 25,000 km of high-speed rail, no other nation can compete with china’s power and speed to deliver goods to where they are needed. it is possible to travel from xi’an to the home of the giant panda in chengdu – just over 700km to the south – at the same time as a wall street banker’s lunch break. the rugged, breathtaking route once took 13 hours; now it takes 3 hours.

 

about one-third of global economic growth was down to china. what happens in china has profound and unavoidable consequences for the global economy and people outside china. as china has changed, so too has its priorities. 

 

when china sent a man to space, the sky ceased to be the limit. where then is the limit? the chinese are a people of determination and willingness, practical and hardworking, and will never give up that mentality. in 40 years, no country in this world has ever done it with this speed. 

 

my china diaries: how china changed my life!

© image | google

the chinese are a people for the world to admire; of course not for those who are jealous of what the chinese have achieved in the last 40 years. i have the feeling that china isn’t done surprising me just yet. 

 

the author is a doctoral student in the school of management at jiangsu university of science and technology.

the opinions expressed here are those of the writer and do not represent the views of hacos.

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