Marvel Studios has released the first trailer for Eternals, giving us an introductory look at the team of immortal heroes. Much of the main cast is present and accounted for, though what they’re up against is only vaguely hinted at.
The footage opens on two of the titular squad, Ikaris (Richard Madden) and Sersi (Gemma Chan), arriving on Earth in a huge spacecraft. From there, we have a rolling montage of the ensemble cast, showing some of their powers, and earthly backstories. As the voiceover from Ajak (Selma Hayek) explains, these beings have quieted lived among and assisted humans for years, until now, when a threat has forced them to reveal themselves.
Kingo (Kumail Nanjiani), Sprite (Lia McHugh), Druig (Barry Keoghan), Thena (Angelina Jolie), Phastos (Bryan Tyree Henry), Makkari (Lauren Ridloff), and Gilgamesh (Don Lee) each get a snippet here or there. They’re all joined by Kit Harrington’s Dan Whitman, aka Black Knight, who gets the briefest of screentime out of costume, and these are just the heroes. The villains, the Deviants, described as “mankind’s oldest enemy” in the official synopsis, seem to be totally absent.
Both the Eternals and the Deviants come from the Celestials, a cosmic race who, in the comics, experimented on early humanity and created the two opposing sides. Where the Eternals are immortal and have generally manageable powers, the Deviants are the flipside, with mutations that manifest in unpredictable ways, often causing physical deformities. All of this is the brainchild of Jack Kirby, and it remains to be seen how much of the established canon will ultimately make it into the movie, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe
At the very least, some of Kirby’s wondrous visual language has seeped in, from the bright, vibrant colours, to all the quasi-magical technology. Between this and Doctor Strange, more and more of Kirby’s boundless artistry is finding a place in the MCU.
In addition to the trailer, Marvel unveiled a poster:
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The official synopsis for Eternals is as follows: “Marvel Studios’ Eternals welcomes an exciting new team of Superheroes to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The epic story, spanning thousands of years, features a group of immortal heroes forced out of the shadows to reunite against mankind’s oldest enemy, The Deviants.
“The outstanding ensemble cast includes Richard Madden as the all-powerful Ikaris, Gemma Chan as humankind-loving Sersi, Kumail Nanjiani as cosmic-powered Kingo, Lauren Ridloff as the super-fast Makkari, Brian Tyree Henry as the intelligent inventor Phastos, Salma Hayek as the wise and spiritual leader Ajak, Lia McHugh as the eternally young, old-soul Sprite, Don Lee as the powerful Gilgamesh, Barry Keoghan as aloof loner Druig, and Angelina Jolie as the fierce warrior Thena. Kit Harington plays Dane Whitman.”
Eternals is directed by Chloe Zhao, who’s coming off her wins for Best Picture, and Best Director, at this year’s Academy Awards for Nomadland, with a screenplay by Zhao and Patrick Burleigh, from a story by Ryan Firpo and Matthew K. Firpo.
Eternals comes out in theatres November 5.