Everything you need to know about ‘The Eternals’ movie
Fans of the MCU are eagerly (and none too patiently) awaiting for Phase 4 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to kick off. Beginning this post-Phase 3 world with new heroes is The Eternals, this little known property is about to be known in a very big way come Fall 2020. Here’s everything we know about the cast, the characters, the plot, and more so you can get your inner fan on for The Eternals.
What are The Eternals in comics?
Created in 1976 by comic legend Jack Kirby, The Eternals refer to a group that is an offshoot of the evolutionary process to create life on Earth. Created by aliens known as the Celestials, the original wielders of the Infinity Stones in comics, the Eternals were meant to be the guardians of Earth, especially from their evil counterparts known as the Deviants.
Due to their effective immortality, this led to the Eternals living separate from their human cousins. Children are amongst the Eternals, especially a child born Eternal. An Eternal and a human could have a child, but the child will almost always be human. The Eternals live in the shadows and their main job is to protect humans from the Deviants.
The Eternals, in comics, have or have the potential to have the following powers by using cosmic energy: superhuman strength, projecting concussive blasts, flight/levitation, telepathy/mind control, generating illusion, teleportation, transmutation of matter, and forcefield generation.
While the Eternals are capable of all these powers, they can focus their cosmic energy into one ability in particular. Some Eternals can use their cosmic energy into abilities outside of the norm, such as super sense or superspeed.
A group of three or more Eternals can also combine into a being known as a Uni-Mind, which is a psionic entity that contains the totality of these powers and abilities of the group forming it.
What is The Eternals about?
We don’t know how comic accurate the movie will be. A new synopsis for The Eternals was recently released by Marvel.
“Marvel Studios’ The Eternals features an exciting new team of Super-Heroes in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, ancient aliens who have been living on Earth in secret for thousands of years. Following the events of Avengers: Endgame, an unexpected tragedy forces them out of the shadows to reunite against mankind’s most ancient enemy, The Deviants.”
So the Deviants are definitely in play, which makes sense as they are the most famous enemies of The Eternals. The timeline is post-Endgame so the events of the Blip (where half of the universe’s population was snapped out of existence for years) are in effect. Given that the Eternals are immortal, who knows if they were affected by the Blip and its aftermath.
We’re assuming the tragedy will be a death of some sort. Though what could kill an immortal (or close enough to one) is definitely worrying.
Who’s in The Eternals?
The Eternals compromises of a large ensemble cast. So we’ll give the actor along with a brief description of their character in The Eternals.
Richard Madden (Game of Thrones) will play Ikaris, an Eternal who is described as “all-powerful” in the film. In the comics, Ikaris, rather than focusing on a specialization of his powers, is more of a jack of all trades. He can access all the basic Eternals power: superhuman strength, flight/levitation, low-level telepathy, cosmic blasts, and teleportation.
Gemma Chan (Crazy Rich Asians) will play Sersi, an Eternal who chooses to live amongst humans in a meaningful way. In comics, Sersi has a specialization for her abilities, choosing to focus on transmutation.
She has the ability, essentially, to alter molecular and atomic structures of all living organisms. When using these powers amongst humans, she passes it off as magic. Sersi also has the full range of Eternal abilities, but prefers her transmutation. Chan was also in Captain Marvel as Minn-Erva.
Kumail Nanjiani (The Big Sick) will play Kingo, an Eternal who is described by the MCU as “cosmic powered” and a “skilled swordsman”. Nanjiani recently caused everyone to fan themselves with a thirst trap of his superhero body. In comics, Kingo is a samurai known as Kingo Sunen. Rather than use his Eternals abilities, he prefers to follow the ways of the samurai, even wearing samurai armor into battle. He’s also producer and actor.
Lauren Ridloff (The Walking Dead) will play Makkari, an Eternal who channels her cosmic energy into superspeed. Ridloff will make history by being the first deaf hero in the MCU. Also, she is a gender-swapped version of the comic Makkari, who is a man. In the comics, Makkari’s use of his cosmic energy into increasing his speed leads to him losing access to other Eternal abilities, such as flight, transmutation, and halving his physical strength. On the flip side, comics Makkari can run to near light speed for an extended period. So we’ll see how much Ridloff’s version will have these limitations.
Brian Tyree Henry (Atlanta) will play Phastos, an Eternal is described as a “cosmic powered inventor”. That is not far off from Phastos’ comic counterpart, who is a master inventor. Phastos builds most of the weapons used by the Eternals, such as Kingo’s sword. He believes that life is meaningless and searches for meaning in life (don’t we all bro). He has a weapon, a hammer, which can manipulate machinery in a way that Eternals’ transmutation powers cannot. Henry is also known for voicing Jefferson Davis in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.
Salma Hayek (The Hitman’s Bodyguard) will play Ajak, who is described as “the wise and spiritual leader of the Eternals”. Like Ridloff’s Makkari, Hayek is playing a gender-swapped version of the comics Ajak. In comics, Ajak, while having the full range of Eternals ability, also has an open line of communication with the Celestials, who created the Eternals.
Lia McHugh (The Lodge) will play Sprite, described as an Eternal who is “eternally young”. At 12-years-old, McHugh is the youngest hero in the MCU by far. In comics, Sprite is something of a trickster figure and prankster.
Said to inspire the character of Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream if that can give you a good idea of Sprite’s personality. McHugh will also play a gender-swapped version of Sprite in the film. Now, interestingly, Sprite is a supervillain hailing from the Eternals, in comics. Sprite is a master of illusions on top of the usual Eternal powers, but is unable to grow past the physical age of 11.
Don Lee (Train to Busan) will play Gilgamesh, an Eternal only described as “powerful”. In comics, Gilgamesh is known as The Forgotten One, an Eternal who consistently meddled in human affairs in a big way. He was locked up a lot in the Eternal City known as Olympia. Gilgamesh has a full range of abilities as an Eternal. He puts a lot of cosmic energy into his strength. He is the strongest Eternal, rivaling Thor in sheer power. Gilgamesh is also a hand-to-hand combat master.
Barry Keoghan (Dunkirk) will play Druig, an Eternal only described as “aloof”. In comics, Druig is a full-on supervillain known as the Lord of Flames and Nightmares. That would be such an awesome name for a metal band. Druig used to work for the KGB (where he discovered a love for torturing people) and constantly schemes in order to get more power and influence amongst the Eternals. He has the full range of Eternals abilities, but has a skill in mind control and brainwashing. So, um, we’ve got good odds on Druig being the bad guy. Anyone else?
Angelina Jolie (Maleficent: Mistress of Evil) will play Thena, who is described as a “fierce warrior”. In comics, Thena is both a scholar and a warrior of the highest order. She has studied under both the brightest minds that the Eternals and humanity have to offer. She is gifted in hand-to-hand and weaponed combat as well. She also wears a special armor in comics of unknown composition. She also has a full range of Eternals abilities.
Kit Harington (Game of Thrones) is not an Eternal, but a human. He will play Dane Whiteman, who is a “human warrior that wields a mystical sword”. Known as the Black Knight in comics, the sword he carries is cursed and took the mantle of the Black Knight in order to restore honor to his family (as his uncle the previous wielder of the sword was a supervillain).
Whitman is a brilliant scientist, even though he is surrounded by more mystical things tends to view matters in a scientific way. His Ebony Blade can absorb all energy attacks (primarily magical based ones), but if it is used to commit horrible evil acts, then it (and its wielder) will begin to crave blood.
In comics, both Dane and Sersei have been romantically linked with each other.
Haaz Sleiman (Little America) has also been cast in an undisclosed role.
The behind-the-scenes team
The Eternals will be directed by Chloé Zhao (The Rider), who is best known for her indie work before joining onto The Eternals. This will mark her blockbuster film debut. The script for The Eternals was written by cousins Matthew K. Firpo and Ryan Firpo. So this is a brand new talent for Marvel Studios working on The Eternals, which will (hopefully) let it stand out.
Production is currently underway at Pinewood Studios in Buckinghamshire, England. There have also been filming in the Canary Islands as well.
When will it be released?
The Eternals will be released on Nov. 6, 2020, in the US.