‘Shang-Chi’ is driving more sustained online buzz than other recent Marvel movies, according to new data

Bus fight scene Shang-Chi
Simu Liu stars as Shang-Chi. Marvel Studios
  • “Shang-Chi” is outpacing “Black Widow” and “Spider-Man: Far From Home” in long-term online engagement.
  • The movie has sustained higher online engagement levels since its release.
  • It’s a good sign for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which still has more movies and shows coming this year.
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Marvel’s new movie, “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” is a hit and is on track to pass Marvel’s other release this year, “Black Widow,” at the box office.

It’s also pacing ahead of “Black Widow” in another area, suggesting that any Marvel fatigue isn’t quite here yet.

The movie has sparked long-term online engagement that is ahead of the other most recent Marvel Cinematic Universe movies (“Black Widow” and 2019’s “Spider-Man: Far From Home”), according to the analytics company Diesel Labs.

Diesel Labs pulls audience-engagement data from social and video platforms Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram, which reflects posts, comments, and more across the platforms to gauge the level of engagement with a piece of content.

“Black Widow” is the clear winner in buzz around its release. It had more than double the engagement of the other two movies on its launch day in theaters and on Disney+ (for an additional $US30 ($AU41) fee). The movie was the first MCU title back in theaters since “Far From Home” nearly two years prior. But it swiftly declined in the days after.

“Shang-Chi” and “Far From Home” debuted with equal engagement, but the former has maintained higher levels of engagement since its release on September 3 compared to the same time frame after “Black Widow” and “Far From Home” premiered.

The chart below illustrates how “Shang-Chi” is outperforming “Black Widow” and “Far From Home” in sustaining audience engagement:

Diesel labs mcu chart

It’s impressive given “Shang-Chi” stars a brand new character to the MCU who hadn’t been introduced in prior movies. But the movie has gained strong praise from audiences and critics, which could be boosting its engagement levels. It has a 93% Rotten Tomatoes critic score and a 98% audience score, and received an A grade from CinemaScore, which surveys audiences on a movie’s opening night.

“Shang-Chi” is also sustaining momentum at the box office, marking a win for movie theaters. It was released to theaters exclusively with a 45-day window while “Black Widow” was released on Disney+ Premier Access.”Black Widow” is currently the biggest movie in the US this year with $US183 ($AU251) million, but “Shang-Chi” is on pace to surpass it.

“Black Widow” dipped 68% in its second weekend while “Shang-Chi” dropped 54%. After 13 days in theaters, “Shang-Chi” had earned $US264 ($AU362) million worldwide, $US152 ($AU208) million of which is from the US. At the same point after its release, “Black Widow” had earned $US140 ($AU192) million in the US in theaters. (“Black Widow” had the added revenue stream of its Disney+ release, however, which totaled $US60 ($AU82) million in its first weekend, the company said.)

After “Shang-Chi’s” box-office success, Disney announced it would release all of its remaining movies this year exclusively to theaters with 45-day or 30-day windows.

The sustained performance of “Shang-Chi” at the box office and with audience engagement are good signs for the future of the MCU, which is ramping up its production of titles across both film and TV. Two more MCU movies, “Eternals” and “Spider-Man: Far From Home,” debut later this year. “Hawkeye” and “Ms. Marvel” series are also coming to Disney+ this year.