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Published 2021-09-23
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Shang-Chi Star & Stock Photo's Greatest Model Is Compared To Keanu Reeves!

Right now Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, which is Marvel’s latest blockbusters, are breaking records in popularity. Over Labour Day weekend in the US the movie earned an estimated $71.4 million in ticket sales, with an additional $56.2 million from overseas markets. In the lead role, fans got to see Simu Liu, a Canadian actor of Chinese descent who prior to having his acting work take off, did some extra work as a model for stock photos. In one he is seen wearing a hard hat, once laughing into a laptop. How did the actor react to fans bringing up his old work? Read on until the end to find out more about this brand new Marvel star!

Simu Liu - Who Is He?

The 32-year-old was born in China, but after only five years of being raised by his grandparents, he emigrated with them to Canada where he was able to meet his parents for the first time. In one of the letters published in the Maclean’s “Before You Go” series, he wrote to his mom and dad and openly stated that they treated him like someone from a distant family, “I often felt like you regarded me as a defective product: you had not been present for my early years, and so my idiosyncrasies left you confused and worried. Perhaps, in the same way that you were strangers to me, your son also felt like a foreigner to you.” Though with time, their relationship improved.

Simu Liu - Early Work

In addition to seeing his parents as strangers for some time, Simu did not want to follow the path that his parents had set for him. After studying business administration at the Ivey Business School at the University of Western Ontario he started working as an accountant at Deloitte but was eventually laid off because as he said in one of his social media posts he was bad at his job. In an interview, he revealed that after he was fired, he found himself on the set of Guillermo del Toro’s film “Pacific Rim” where he worked as an extra for minimum wage and that was when he had fallen in love with acting. After his extra work, Liu had spent the next several years working as an extra, as well as dressing up as Spider-Man at children’s birthday parties.

Simu Liu - Notable Performances

Before he was Shang-Chi in the brand new Marvel blockbuster, there had been several productions in which fans might remember seeing Simu in. One of them was the role of Jung in the Canadian TV show Kim’s Convenience, Tom in Yappie, Garbage Boy in Nora From Queens, where he starred alongside his Marvel co-star Akwafina, as well as in a BBC production, Orphan Black. Following his stint in Marvel, there are now rumors that fans might be able to see Shang in the upcoming sequel to Doctor Strange, The Multiverse of Madness. But there is also another reason that many are finding this actor familiar.

via GIPHY

Simu Liu - The Stock Photo Model

And as some might imagine, prior to the Marvel checks rolling in, cash was a little
hard to come by and so to make some extra money Simu did a one-off photoshoot as a model for some stock images. So even prior to his superhero movie fame, people might have had an opportunity to see Liu in advertisements and textbooks all over the world. The pictures can be found on Getty by using search words like “Cheerful East Asian coworker”, “East Asian”, “business person”, “smiling”, “cheerful”, and “coworker”.

Simu Liu - Greatest Stock Model Of All Time

On the stock photo the Canadian also appeared as a Zumba trainer, an amused office worker, and another time as a construction worker hat. And thanks to his Shang-Chi fame, it wasn’t long before internet users started finding them and sharing them around social media and generally having a great laugh. Though of course, Liu has also caught on to this and he managed to have a laugh at the whole situation. In one social media post, he shared some of the photos asking if he was the greatest stock model of all time and at the same time asking people to stop buying them.

Simu Liu - The Stock Payout

Of course while promoting the Marvel flick, in which he plays the first Asian superhero, asking about the stock photos was a great topic for the interview. And Liu was more than happy to talk about it. As it turned out, the reason that he decided to do the one-day photoshoot was that he was in credit card debt. For the one-day shoot, the actor got paid $120 and signed away all his rights to the photos, which means that the company can now continue selling the pics for as long as they want and charge how much they want for it without needing to pay any royalties. Speaking of his experience on the Jimmy Fallon show he said that if you’re a nice model you get paid thousands of dollars and you walk the runways. But when you’re a stock model you get paid a base rate.

via GIPHY

Simu Liu vs iStock

As the saying goes “If you can’t fight ‘em, join ‘em” and that is exactly what Simu had done. Following the success of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, the actor decided to have a little laugh at all those people who told him that the film would flop, he shared a stock image of him smiling and pointing at a laptop screen with the caption “Me laughing at the people who thought we’d flop”. To this iStock, who are responsible for the pics, replied to it saying that they always believed in him but added that if being a superhero didn’t work out for him, their door would always be open. Right away, Liu immediately retorted and asked if the company is going to pay him the profit that they have earned with his photos.

Simu Liu - Shang-Chi Prophecy?

Given that we are talking about his success from the Marvel movie and the international fame that came with it is it possible that Simu prophesied the role in the superhero flick himself? Back in 2018, he had made a post on Twitter asking Marvel if they could take him on as Shang-Chi. And as you can tell, it happened! A year later during Comic-Con, the superhero filmmakers announced him as the titular character. Joking about that coincidence, in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter Liu said that he hopes he got the role because of his abilities and not the tweet.

Simu Liu - Is Like Keanu Reeves?

And along with fame had come comparisons to other famous stars! It also seems that many internet users had taken to comparing the Canadian to none other than Matrix star, Keanu Reeves! Why some of you might ask? For some, it's for various reasons. It is a known fact that Reeves doesn’t seem to age, and that is something people also commented about Liu and how he hasn’t really aged much in the past several years. For others, it was the martial arts skills that both actors had displayed in various movies.

Do you see the resemblance between Keanu and Simu? Let us know in the comments and if you enjoyed this article do not hesitate to share it with your friends and leave a Like on our Facebook page!

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via GIPHY

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