How Well Did 'Shang-Chi' Do in the Box Office and What It Means for the Future of the MCU?

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the 10 Rings is the new Marvel movie which has been a surprise smash hit. It is the first movie to introduce a new superhero into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) since Captain Marvel back in 2019.

The movie stars a mostly Asian cast led by Simu Liu, who plays the title role.

The film follows Shang-Chi, who has escaped his past and is living a fairly normal life in San Francisco.

However, his past catches up with him and forces him to return to his roots, and he becomes intimately connected with the formidable 10 Rings Organization.

The movie's success may have more importance than just making money, as it could help decide how other films in the franchise are released.

How Much Has Shang-Chi Made At the Box Office?

shang chi movie
Shang-Chi press still
Shang-Chi press still
Shang-Chi press still
Shang-Chi press still
Images from MCU movie "Shang-Chi and the 10 Rings"

At the U.S. box office, Shang-Chi has made $71.4 million so far, with it only being out for one weekend.

Internationally, the movie made $56.2 million, meaning altogether the movie has made $127.6 million at the global box office.

The movie has not appeared too highly in the rankings of opening weekends for Marvel movies, likely due to the movie industry still feeling the aftershocks of the coronavirus pandemic.

Compared to one of its predecessors, Avengers: Endgame, its opening was not particularly great, with that movie earning three times the amount in its opening weekend.

However, it did perform better than its MCU brothers Thor and Captain America: The First Avengers, and many movies now under the Disney banner, such as The Amazing Spider-Man.

How Shang-Chi Could Alter The Future of the MCU

There is potential that the success of Shang-Chi could have more riding on it than just the future of that particular story.

In fact, some have suggested it may alter when its successive MCU films make it to the big screen.

According to Variety, the studio is still deciding how it will release The Eternals, the upcoming MCU movie featuring an all-star ensemble cast.

Black Widow was released simultaneously on Disney+ and in movie theaters, which has led to its leading lady, Scarlett Johansson, suing the company for breach of contract.

This is because she, like other stars in the franchise, earns a cut of profits from the theatrical release, and claimed she was promised an exclusive cinema window before the movie went to streaming.

While it is unclear if this may be an issue for The Eternals, there have been questions raised about whether the film will follow in the footsteps of Black Widow or Shang-Chi.

Given Shang-Chi is one of the highest-grossing movies in the pandemic era, and it was released on the notoriously difficult Labor Day weekend market, it has shown the movie theater is not dead quite yet.

Newsweek has approached Disney for comment.