Marvel’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings features two CGI dragons, known as the Great Protector and the Dweller-In-Darkness, duking it out in an epic final battle. Simu-Liu’s Shang-Chi and Awkwafina’s Katy ride around on the Great Protector in a sequence that looks so damn fun it puts the dragon-riding in Game Of Thrones to shame. Well, as it turns out, the two actors were actually able to ride on a life-size, moving dragon prop to shoot those scenes. And I am beyond jealous.
I recently spoke with the Shang-Chi visual effects team and SFX Supervisor Dan Oliver said this about creating the physical beast:
Why isn’t this a ride at Disney Parks?! Web Slingers at California Adventure is fun and all, but honestly, I’d take the full-size moving water dragon. Simu Liu himself told us about the one prop he wanted to take from the set, and shockingly, it wasn’t the dragon ride. Maybe it’ll end up at a Planet Hollywood and guests can take it for a spin while having a beer, you know, in Liu (pun intended) of a mechanical bull. But I’m getting way off-topic.
Constructing a CGI dragon along with a physical ride is extra challenging due to the fact that it was unlike anything the Marvel Cinematic Universe had done before. Over the course of 13 years, we’ve seen a lot of fantastical nonsense in the franchise, but never a dragon. As WETA Digital VFX Supervisor Sean Walker explained:
It all paid off. The VFX work in the film was amazing, so much so that they were just nominated for an Academy Award. You can check out the rest of the nominees here. If you dug Shang-Chi as much as I did, you’re in luck, as there’s a sequel on the way. It’s little surprise given the box office performance, but that wasn’t the only reason Marvel wants more. Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige explained that they’re excited to see what else director Destin Daniel Cretton is capable of, given that he’s chalked full of ideas. We recently did an interview with Destin if you want to take a glimpse into his mind.
As for when you can expect Marvel’s upcoming slate of flicks, we’ve got this handy list. There’s no release date for Shang-Chi 2 as of yet, and it’ll likely be a while, as even Simu Liu is being kept in the dark. As more information comes to light, we will certainly keep you updated!
It may not feel like it sometimes, but any upcoming movie has the chance to be named “the greatest movie ever made” by someone out there. However, that honor does have some specific caveats if you’re someone like filmmaker Quentin Tarantino. Not only has the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood director chosen a Steven Spielberg classic for that very distinction, Tarantino also explained just why that title is very specific.
In an upcoming interview with our in-house podcast ReelBlend, Quentin Tarantino made his fourth appearance to talk about all things movies; the first since the big live show at the New Beverly Cinema. Promoting his new co-hosting gig on The Video Archives Podcast, Tarantino had yet another spirited discussion about cinema, which led to his pick of Steven Spielberg’s Jaws as the greatest “movie” ever made. That distinction is important, as the Once Upon A Time…In Hollywood director made that perfectly clear through the following remarks:
Leave it to Quentin Tarantino to separate his tastes in movies into those two separate, important camps: “movies” and “films.” In this case, the designation of a movie almost sounds like it’s shorthand for the blockbuster opuses that Steven Spielberg made a name for himself with. Which means that “films” are presumably more of the independent/art house titles that have higher pedigrees, and usually end up on the lists of best picture nominees every year.
Strangely enough, Jaws is one of six horror movies to have Best Picture nominations, so the line could blur just a bit in that respect. Putting aside the “movies” versus “films” debate, Quentin Tarantino isn’t using that separation to be a snob. Later on in the conversation, he explained how spectacles such as this are their own form of art, and how Steven Spielberg came to be someone who perfected it:
Spielberg, and “cohorts” like George Lucas, Martin Scorsese, and Francis Ford Copolla all latched onto genres that were pulpier entertainments in their childhood, only to make them into something new. Through films like Jaws, Star Wars, Taxi Driver, and The Godfather, we saw a generation of directors taking movies they loved and reviving them through their own personal lenses. Which is exactly what Quentin Tarantino would do when he stepped onto the scene with Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction; and it’s also why he’s such a staunch supporter of the cinematic experience.
If this conversation boils down to anything, it’s game recognizing game. Much as Steven Spielberg idolized the movies that helped make Jaws, Quentin Tarantino has reverence for the bearded director and his dedication to making the movies that sparked his love of cinema. Though considering the history his collaborator Samuel L. Jackson has had with sharks, you have to wonder if this has already sparked any sort of humorous conversations between the two?
You’ll be able to watch, and listen, to Quentin Tarantino’s latest appearance on ReelBlend, as it’s set to hit YouTube tomorrow. Meanwhile, Tarantino may not have his tenth and final film in the works just yet, but you can still enjoy the man’s gift for words in two very cool ways.
Tarantino’s Video Archives podcast, which he co-hosts with friend and collaborator Roger Avery, is currently streaming wherever you find fine listening material. However, if you also want to read the man’s thoughts on ‘70s filmmaking in his upcoming book Cinema Speculation, which you can currently preorder on Amazon (opens in new tab); or any other fine bookseller.
The stars of “Prey,” Amber Midthunder (“Naru”), Dakota Bevers (“Taabe”), Dane DiLiegro (“The Predator”), director Dan Trachtenberg and producer Jhane Myers discuss their new “Predator” movie in this interview with CinemaBlend at San Diego Comic-Con 2022. They discuss the “Prey” audition moment that landed Amber Midthunder her role and more!
“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” stars Chris Pratt (Peter Quill / Star-Lord), Karen Gillan (Nebula), Will Poulter (Adam Warlock), Pom Klementieff (Mantis), Sean Gunn (Kraglin / On-Set Rocket), Chukwudi Iwuji (The High Evolutionary) and writer Director James Gunn discuss their upcoming Marvel film and conclusion of the “Guardians of the Galaxy” trilogy in this post-Hall H interview with CinemaBlend at San Diego Comic-Con 2022.
00:00 – Chris Pratt on Finding “Your Side”
00:35 – Chris Pratt Teases What’s Ahead For Star-Lord and Gamora In GOTG 3
01:24 – Karen Gillan LOVES ‘Avengers: Endgame’ Fan Reactions
02:00 – Karen Gillan Weighs In On Nebula Unaliving Nebula in ‘Endgame’
02:32 – James Gunn Teases a “Darker” ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Movie
03:20 – Sean Gunn on Baby Rocket’s Difficult Backstory
04:30 – Pom Klementieff on Welcoming New Marvel Actors to the ‘Guardians’ Family
05:15 – Pom Klementieff Teases A More Badass Mantis In ‘Guardians 3’
05:35 – Will Poulter Teases Adam Warlock Origins in ‘GOTG 3’
06:32 – Chukwudi Iwuji on The High Evolutionary and His Motivations
07:20 – Chukwudi Iwugi Praises James Gunn’s Dialogue
08:15 – Chris Pratt Recalls His Last Day of Filming the ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Trilogy
08:55 – James Gunn Is Literally Always Writing and Rewriting Scripts
09:49 – Will Poulter Wants to Play Adam Warlock Again “If Marvel Will Have Me”