Since its earliest days, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has struck a balance between Earthbound stories and cosmic offerings. Iron Man, Spider-Man and Ant-Man patrol our recognizable surroundings, while the Guardians of the Galaxy and Captain Marvel take audiences to new heights and far away worlds. When Chloe Zhao’s Eternals opens in theaters in November, it’s expected to mirror movies like Thor and Avengers: Infinity War by blending a strong sense of Earth action with the development of the MCU’s cosmic side.
CinemaBlend traveled to the London set of Chloe Zhao’s Eternals to get the scoop on the impending Marvel feature, and see what this unique corner of the MCU will look like on screen. And during our visit, Nate Moore, Marvel producer and the VP of Production and Development, opened up about how cosmic energy powers the Eternals, and will be visualized by Zhao in special ways. As Moore explained to us:
This use of cosmic energy and the flavor it brings to the powers of the Eternals was first brought up by Marvel Comics creator Jack Kirby, whose influence in designing the team can be seen reflected in Chloe Zhao’s feature. Moore raved about how Angelina Jolie’s character, Thena, is able to use cosmic energy to create daggers, transform them into swords, shift that into a staff, and then separate the staff into two swords. It looks like this.
Eternals actually makes some changes from the team’s comic book origins to make them more cosmic. As Nate Moore points out, the heroes in the books were created from mankind as a means to combat the Deviants. Moore explains:
Ah yes, spaceships. One of the coolest sets that we were able to tour when we visited London was the inside of the Eternals spaceship, a flat but massive triangle that can be seen in the trailers as it arrives on our planet. Eve Stewart, production designer on Eternals, walked us through the mammoth set and explained some of its inspirations and details, telling CinemaBlend:
The ship itself contains vast rooms that contain artifacts the Eternals have picked up during their travels. The highlight of the craft has to be a massive room that the crew came to know as the Bridge, a “spiritual place” where Stewart says the Eternals team comes together.
And in the design of the ship, the production designer found ways to connect it to the costumes of the team. And in the middle of this space rests a statue of Arishem the Judge, the leader of the Celestials, who created the Eternals. When discussing the design on Arishem, Stewart told us:
This speaks to the scope of scale of Eternals, a movie that Chloe Zhao hopes will expand the concept of the types of stories that can be told in the MCU, by diverse and experimental storytellers. We’ll have more from the set this week, and Eternals will be in theaters on November 5.
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Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. Sean created ReelBlend, which he proudly cohosts with Jake Hamilton and Kevin McCarthy. And he's the author of RELEASE THE SNYDER CUT, the Spider-Man history book WITH GREAT POWER, and an upcoming book about Bruce Willis.