Kumail Nanjiani Defends Eternals After Backlash, Thought Harry Styles Cameo Was BS

Marvel Studios has done almost no wrong when it comes to box office success and positive fan reaction. While everybody has their favorite parts of the MCU and the bits they don’t like as much, nearly every movie has been a winner. However, one movie that has had a rough go of it was Chloé Zhao’s Eternals. It’s a film not every MCU fan loves, but Kumail Nanjianai continues to defend it as a great film, even if he didn’t believe the Harry Styles cameo was real.

Kumail Nanjianji, who played Kingo in Eternals and stars in the new Hulu series Welcome to Chippendales recently spoke with Josh Horowitz where he defended his MCU movie, saying that director Chloe Zhao tried to make something unique, and he thinks that over time more people will come around to it. The actor said…

I love Eternals, I think it’s fantastic. It did bum me out that it was sort of divisive. Chloe made a very, very ambitious, huge movie that’s very different from most comic book movies. She went for a really, really high bar. Of course it would be great if every single person on Earth loved it. But I love it. I still think at some point people are going to re-watch that movie and realize that there’s a lot more to it than they give it credit for. I love Chloe, she’s such a great filmmaker.

Eternals didn't set the box office on fire the way that a lot of Marvel movies do, and while some of that can be chalked up to lingering pandemic effects as well as the fact that the Eternals have never been massively popular characters, the fact is that even critics had a bigger issue with Eternals than they usually do with Marvel Studios films these days.

If there was any part of Eternals that fans did react to, it was the post-credits scene that introduced Harry Styles as Eros. Kumail Najianai says that he heard things about Styles possibly appearing in the film during production, but he didn’t actually believe any of it, until the actor and singer arrived on the set. Interestingly, while Kingo isn’t in the scene with Eros, there apparently was a version where they did appear together. Nanjiani explained…  

I started hearing rumblings about it here and there and I thought it was bullshit. I was like ‘The guy from One Direction, no way.’ And then you show up for work one day and there’s gorgeous Harry Styles. ‘Hey mate.’ I’m like ‘Hey, what are you doing here man?’ We actually shot a different scene with Harry Styles because the ending now, my character’s not in that scene. But we shot a scene where I was with him, and it was a different post-credits scene.

Eternals ends with the team split, with some remaining on earth while others go into space. Kingo, among those on earth, is taken by a Celestial to be punished for killing a Celestial on earth. It’s the team in space, looking for their friends, who end up having a run in with Eros. When, or even if, we’ll see the rest of that Eternals story play out, is a big question. We know a lot of what's happening in Phase 5 and 6 of the MCU and no Eternals 2 had been confirmed yet.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian, Dirk began writing for CinemaBlend as a freelancer in 2015 before joining the site full-time in 2018. He has previously held positions as a Staff Writer and Games Editor, but has more recently transformed his true passion into his job as the head of the site's Theme Park section. He has previously done freelance work for various gaming and technology sites. Prior to starting his second career as a writer he worked for 12 years in sales for various companies within the consumer electronics industry. He has a degree in political science from the University of California, Davis.  Is an armchair Imagineer, Epcot Stan, Future Club 33 Member.