The two most popular fandoms will clash next year, as RuPaul’s Drag Race graduate Shi Cooley has joined the cast of the upcoming Marvel Ironheart series in an unknown role. Fans first met Shi when they participated in the 9th season of RuPaul’s Drag Race in 2017, where they entered the top four along with eventual winner Sasha Velour, Peppermint and Trinity Tak. In 2020, Shi returned to the main arena to participate in the 5th season of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars, where they emerged victorious against their fellow alumnus Jujubi (Season 2, Season 1 All Stars), Ms. Cracker (season 10) and Blair Saint. Claire (season 10).
Most recently, Shi participated for the third time in RuPaul’s Drag Race against seven other winners of the 7th season of RPDR All Stars, whose goal was to crown the “Queen of All Queens” in a completely new format. Although Shi and their fellow competitors eventually lost to the winner of the fifth season, Jinx Monsoon, there were several drag racing stars who either tried their hand at acting after the show or made acting careers before joining the series. For example, Willam, the star of the 4th season of RuPaul’s Drag Race, was known for starring in the television series Nip/Tuck, and then starred in A Star Is Born in 2018. Kelly Mantle from season 6 also starred in several TV shows and movies before appearing in Drag Race. , and dozens of queens have starred in music videos by various singers and other projects.
Although Shea didn’t win season 7 of All Stars, the popular Queen was announced as the newest cast to join the upcoming Marvel Ironheart series. Although the role of Shi has not yet been revealed, Deadline stated that fans can watch Shi in the upcoming series for six episodes of the show, which tells about the brilliant teenage inventor Riri Williams / Ironheart, creating the most perfect armor since Tony Stark’s Iron Man. According to Ironheart’s IMDb page, the show is scheduled to be released on Disney+ sometime in 2023 after the series was first announced in late 2020. Harper Anthony and Lyric Ross, who will play Riri’s best friend.
Although Marvel has not officially commented on Shi’s upcoming role, Drag star Ray RuPaul revealed their upcoming Ironheart debut on Instagram. “Acting was my first love long before Drag,” Shi told his 1.5 million followers. “Therefore, it seems quite appropriate to end my drag racing journey and begin my acting career in the most grandiose way I could have imagined.” Calling Ironheart “an absolutely stunning experience for viewers,” dozens of other Drag Race participants left their congratulations and wishes for Shi’s post, including Crystal Metid (season 12 of RuPaul’s Drag Race), Alexis Mateo (Season 3, RPDR All Stars, Season 1) and 5), Gigi Goode (season 12), April Carrion (season 6) and co-star in the All Stars season 7 movie Shi Raja Gemini.
Shi will be the first RuPaul’s Drag Race graduate to appear in the Marvel project when Ironheart is released on Disney+. This opportunity will not only expand their professional careers, but will no doubt attract crowds of fans to the Marvel cinematic universe, which recently announced its upcoming shows and films that will make up the 5th phase of the franchise. Drag racing fans still have something to watch, for example, the currently broadcast Drag Race France, the upcoming editions of RuPaul’s Drag Race in Belgium and Sweden, as well as the spin-off RuPaul’s Secret Celebrity Race season 2.