Things looked pretty different for “Shang-Chi” star Simu Liu 10 years ago.
The Chinese Canadian actor celebrated the 10th anniversary Tuesday of the day he was laid off from his accounting job at Deloitte in Toronto.
He recounted the way his managing partner terminated his employment and how he was promptly escorted out to collect his things by a security guard and HR staffer. “I fought back tears of humiliation, grabbed my things, and never looked back,” the 32-year-old wrote in an Instagram post.
“Ten years ago I thought my life was over. I had wasted countless time and money that my family had invested in me. Years of schooling, gifted programs, trying to live up to my parents’ expectations. It all came crashing down in an instant,” he wrote.
The next four years were spent “running around like a headless chicken trying to figure out how to break into the [entertainment] industry, struggling with credit card debt and taking any job I could.”
“Another three years were spent trying to break into Hollywood, sinking my precious life savings into something many would call a pipe dream,” he added. “It’s really only been these past three years that anything I’ve done has begun to bear any fruit.”
Liu graduated from college with a degree in business administration and landed a job at Deloitte, where he worked for eight months before he was let go in 2012.
He got his start in the entertainment industry in 2013, when he appeared as a background extra in “Pacific Rim.”
From 2015 to 2021, he starred in the popular sitcom “Kim’s Convenience.”
In 2021, he became Marvel’s first Asian superhero in “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.” A sequel is in the works.
“I know luck has played a substantial role in my successes but I am sure that if I hadn’t been cast in two life-changing roles, I’d still find purpose and meaning in the pursuit of success on my own terms,” he wrote in his post. “Not my parents’ definition - MINE.”
He encouraged anyone in a similar situation to remember that “no amount of money is worth compromising your vision for yourself.”
“The pursuit of a dream- YOUR dream- against all odds… that’s what life is all about.”
He thanked his former corporate employer for doing “what I never had the courage to do myself.”
“You destroyed a life that I was building for someone else, so that I could finally begin to build a life for me.”