Marvel appears to be going all in on Eternals. From the brief snippet we've seen in the film's debut trailer, it's a very different MCU entry. For starters, there's far less green screen than usual, it feels like a seriously directed film. At the moment, it doesn't necessarily feel like something Marvel would sign off on.
Well, as it just so happens, Eternals is a very special case for Marvel Studios. According to Marvel boss Kevin Feige, the upcoming MCU movie would not exist at all if it wasn't for its director: Chloé Zhao.
Eternals owes everything to Chloé Zhao
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Kevin Feige admitted that Zhao’s involvement in the film is the reason behind its existence. Without Zhao, Eternals would not be releasing, not in this way and not at this time.
“The truth is, we would not have even attempted this if it weren't for Chloé. We thought, here's a filmmaker who is equal parts cinematic visionary and genre nerd. She can outtalk any of us when it comes to manga and Star Wars and Marvel comics. It's quite an astounding combination. And this movie, I think, represents all of the immense multitudes of Chloé."
Zhao’s pedigree of excellent filmmaking meant that Marvel could take the leap to bring this group of superbeings onto the big screen. Everyone from producer to actor is comfortable due to her skill. Kumail Nanjiani, who plays Kingo, had this to say:
“She's just one of the greatest filmmakers ever, and she's at the height of her powers right now. Working with someone like that, you'd think it'd be intimidating, but it was the opposite. I just felt very safe. I was like, Oh, she's not going to let me suck at this."
Read More: The best Iron Man 3 character is returning in this MCU film
The movie is a huge gamble
While The Eternals have been a part of Marvel Comics since the 70s, they're not as well known as characters like Captain America. Marvel's previous gamble, launching the MCU with Iron Man, paid off due to the skill of director John Favreau. After everything, it seems Kevin Feige is making that exact same gamble with Chloé Zhao.
As for what we can expect to see in the film, Eternals has unlimited possibilities. However, Marvel and Zhao are still being rather tight-lipped about what exactly the movie will be about. Zhao said:
“I can go as big and as epic as our meaning in the cosmos, but I can also go intimate and explore all of the internal struggles we have as human beings," she explains. "Because these characters have lived among us for so long, [they have] the same struggles like identity, purpose, faith, personal freedom versus greater good — all the duality and flaws that make us human."
Read More: I watched both versions of Justice League back-to-back for some reason