SHANG-CHI Star Florian Munteanu Talks Razor Fist's Future, Squaring Off With Wolverine, & More (Exclusive)

Ahead of next week's Blu-ray release of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, we sat down with boxer-turned actor Florian Munteanu to talk about playing Razor Fist and his character's future.

With Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings due out on 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray next week, we recently caught up with former heavyweight boxer-turned-actor Florian Munteanu (Creed II; Borderlands) to talk about his role as Razor Fist in the Destin Daniel Cretton-directed Marvel Studios blockbuster.

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During our chat, he explained how he wanted to differentiate the physical appearance of Razor Fist from Creed II's Viktor Drago, spoke about working with Simu Liu on the bus fight, this film allowing him to show more range as a comedic performer, what he hopes to see from his character in the sequel, and which Marvel superhero he'd want to take on next.

Check out the interview below, and keep scrolling for the full transcript!

ROHAN: You’re obviously a trained boxer, and you've played that role in Creed II, but how did your training and approach differ when you signed on to play Razor Fist? What did you do differently?

FLORIAN: Well, there were a lot of differences. First of all, this was not a boxing movie, it was a comic movie, so I had to change my fighting style, especially cause I didn’t have a forearm and that bothers everything that comes with stabilization and distance management and actually, yeah, using just the one hand - me, as a boxer, coming from an orthodox stance, I’m used to using my left hand to jab, to actually control the fight. That was not the case this time around cause the focus was on the right hand and other than that, we tried to create a different look when it comes to the physique, boxers usually, especially with Creed, I tried to slim down as much as much as possible to make it look as equal as possible with Mike, but this time around, we said this is a supervillain, we want Razor Fist to look as big, as massive, as intimidating as possible.

So, I basically abandoned all the cardio, all the boxing, all the running and it was just heavy weightlifting and I was weighing the most of my entire career. I was around 255, which was hard to keep up, because my body is naturally used to all that cardio and is naturally used to go down with its weight, so that was not only hard to gain the weight but also to maintain the weight. We also had the corona break in-between, so I had to keep all the diet and do the workout routine everyday, so I’m not losing that weight, not losing that look, but yeah, in the end of the day, we made it, but it was tough. That’s all I can say.

ROHAN: How long did it take for you to train for the bus fight and how long did it actually take to film?

FLORIAN: So, I think, me and Simu, we came in around four weeks before to train for that specific scene and get used to the choreography and train with the stunt team. Movies are a weird thing, one day you come in and you have one choreography and then the next day you come in and they change the whole thing and especially, in fighting, if it’s in a movie, it’s like a dance. You’re not supposed to hit each other, that factor of the unknown goes away and you actually have to know exactly what happens and like I said, it’s like a dance and you have to make it work. The two of you have to make it work, so if there are constantly changes, it makes it even more difficult for you, so that was tough before we went into shooting the scene, so we had like four weeks of preparation and then another four weeks before we had all the scenes.

ROHAN: You get to showcase more of your talents and versatility in this film... what was that like to play as an actor? Was it a pretty natural transition to be able to show a bit more personality?

FLORIAN: That was the goal, that was the goal coming into the project, especially after Creed 2, I wanted to show more range and I mean, yeah, if Marvel knocks on your door, it’s hard to say no. I was very lucky that Destin was very open-minded from a creative perspective about what he wanted to do with Razor Fist. I mean, Razor Fist, in general, there was a lot more layers of that character in that movie, you will see a couple of those things in the bonus material.

It’s always like that, not all the scenes make the final cut, so there was even more range to the character, but I’m very lucky and very happy how we established the character and I’m looking forward to what’s in the future for the character because I feel like there’s a lot more layers to peel off for him.

ROHAN: The Ten Rings have a new leader, and considering Razor Fist makes it out of this film alive, it seems like he's going to continue playing a big role in the operation. So where would you like to see him go in a sequel? Are there any characters you'd like to see him go up against?

FLORIAN: Oh, that’s a tough question. That’s a tough question, bro. First of all, I’m not giving too much away with this is that I feel like I want to show the emotional side of Razor Fist. I feel like there’s a lot behind the mask, behind that physique, it’s a guy who has a lot of heart and who definitely has a background story that is interesting to tell, so I want to go into depth with that, showing that he’s more than just a soldier, even though we see values like loyalty, he sticks to the end with Wenwu, until he realizes that, okay, he has no other choice but joining the other party, so they make it out alive. There are a lot of values there, I feel like family is very important to him and the Ten Rings became his family, so it would be interesting to see how he got there and what was all the story around that, how he lost the arm.

There is so much to tell with this character, as you know, in the comic books, he has two blades and a beautiful matchup, and fans are sending me stuff from the comic books where Razor Fist actually meets Wolverine, which I think would be a cool matchup, blade against blade. That sounds awesome to me, so I feel like there’s a lot of potential.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is now available on Digital HD;
and out on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, and DVD on November 30!

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