simu liu stock photos

Simu Liu calls out Toshiba for using one of his old stock photos in a printer booklet

If there's one thing Canadian actor Simu Liu is really good at (aside from executing insanely cool fight choreography) it's keeping his name in peoples' mouths — whether by clapping back at jerks on Twitter, clapping back at jerks on Twitter, or... well, clapping back at literally anyone on Twitter who happens to cross him.

Seriously though, he's really good at Twitter — funny, irreverent, and surprisingly candid for someone at his level. But, as fans of the Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings star well know, Liu wasn't always at this level.

Before he was a Marvel Cinematic Universe superhero, hosting SNL and walking red carpets, and even before he was cast as Jung on the hit Canadian TV show Kim's Convenience, Liu was a prolific stock model.

Twitter users had a field day upon discovering this fact shortly after Shang-Chi hit theatres last year, sharing images upon images of photos featuring Liu as everything from an office employee to a dance class participant.

While not the first time stock images featuring Liu had made the rounds on Twitter, people went wild searching for any and all of his old stock photos after Shang-Chi came out. 

Simu Liu stock photos became a meme of sorts, amusing the GTA-raised actor himself... up to a point.

Liu revealed back in 2018 that he did some modelling for a stock photo company around 2014 to help pay off his credit card bills, participating in one shoot for a flat rate of around $100.

It was a gig he later said he regretted taking, as his smiling face now graces hundreds, if not thousands of random storefronts, print ads and corporate training documents — including, apparently, the Italian cover of an instructions booklet for a Toshiba printer.

"Toshiba, whatever you paid for this photo, I guarantee you I would have endorsed you for less," tweeted Liu on Sunday with a photo of the booklet cover in question.

"Now we are enemies."

He was likely joking about the enemies part, but fans were quick to do some detective work on the actor and stuntman's behalf.

"The print alone looks at least 5 years old. They might have bought the thing 10 years ago... And it was Toshiba Italy, not even U.S.," wrote one Twitter user.

"Toshiba may not entirely be at fault here. The photocopier model pictured is the Toshiba e-STUDIO 4508A, which was released in 2015," wrote the website We Got This Covered

"Judging by the slightly faded instruction booklet I'm betting this comes from around the same time, so the graphic designers weren't to know they had a future megastar on their hands."

Others found humour in the situation.

"I now need a shot for shot remake of Shang Chi, but instead of running from the Ten Rings, you have to fight the organization that uses your face for all its products," joked one Twitter user. "(I'm aware you at one point took all the stock photos, just the idea of you fighting them is funny)."

"Can't wait for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Stock Photos," wrote another. "It's going to be [lit]."

Some used the opportunity to share even more spottings of Liu's stock photos in the corporate wilds...

However, the weird Italian Toshiba booklet featuring Simu Liu came to be, the actor doesn't actually seem too bothered by it. He has yet to address the topic again or reply to anyone on Twitter showing support for what they think is a serious problem.

"I DON'T WANT TO WAIT GODDAMNIT GIVE ME NICHOLAS CAGE PLAYING NICHOLAS CAGE NOWWWWW," wrote Liu on Twitter in his first post since sharing the Toshiba image on March 14. 

Lead photo by

Simu Liu


Join the conversation Load comments

Latest in Film

You can watch free outdoor movies every week on a hidden back patio in Toronto

Arnold Schwarzenegger was just spotted biking around Toronto

You can watch movies under the stars for free in Toronto this summer

Toronto's most famous hotel rebranded for movie shoot

Arnold Schwarzenegger is in Toronto filming a new Netflix series

The history of The Kids of Degrassi Street

TIFF will offer cheap tickets to everyone under 25 at 2022 film festival in Toronto

That time when Mr. Bean came to the Eaton Centre in Toronto