"The end of one era...is the beginning of another."
Marketing for Marvel Studios' Eternals promises a film that kickstarts a new chapter for the MCU. The ensemble piece will introduce ten new enhanced individuals, take viewers through multiple time periods, and provide a new perspective on the entire universe.
Despite being a launching pad for pastures new, Eternals builds upon the MCU's foundation.
With Thanos and the Infinity Saga in the rearview, Marvel's next Avengers-level threat appears to be Kang the Conqueror and the multiverse. While the finale of Loki has yet to reveal its consequences to other Marvel projects, Sylvie's decision to kill He Who Remains and send the sacred timeline into madness is something all MCU scribes are keeping in mind.
Eternals Writers Discuss The Multiverse
It's a concept that Doctor Strange knows frighteningly little about, but the creators at Marvel Studios have been doing their Multiverse 101 homework.
Speaking to Deadline, Eternals writer Kaz Firpo admitted he could not "definitively" reveal the multiverse's influence on his film; however, expanding the Marvel Cinematic Universe into a multiverse was the "logical conclusion" for where the franchise would go eventually.
"What I will say is [the Multiverse] is the logical conclusion of where we wanted to go with all these incredible stories."
Kaz continued that Eternals in particular is most concerned with expanding the MCU's cosmic side.
"Eternals is really launching us off into the atmosphere, into the cosmos. That's a whole door. Guardians touched on it. Thor touched on it. How many planets? How many stories? There's so many things we can go and see and explore."
With the Marvel Cinematic Universe being an adaptation of various stories from Marvel Comics, Kaz noted that toying with the multiverse on the big screen was an inevitability considering how "intrinsic" it is to the comics' identity.
"With the multiverse, that's just intrinsic in the MCU. If you are in the Marvel Universe, if you've been reading Earth-616 or Earth-613, there's all these different planets. A big inspiration that we read a lot when we were reading the comics for Eternals was Earth-X. Earth-X was like [writer Jim] Krueger and the incredible team who made that story. If you want to be taken on a trip through the history and the who's who of the Marvel Universe, that's a great run. Even the Neil Gaiman run of Eternals is an incredible read."
Fellow writer and cousin Ryan Firpo added that the MCU's introduction of the multiverse allows for limitless story possibilities.
"Talking about all these different runs of Eternals, it just speaks to why the multiverse is kind of intrinsic to the comic book medium. Basically, comic books, how they work, is that different artists and different writers come in and do their iteration on that character or that set of characters. So by opening up a multiverse for the MCU, you kind of introduce that possibility to do that. Tell different versions of the same story, the way that they have been doing in comic books for the past 50+ years."
Will The Eternals Enter Marvel's Imminent Multiversal Conflict?
While both Kaz and Ryan remained tight-lipped on how much influence the multiverse had on their scripting process, there's reason to believe the Eternals will have some sort of role in whatever Jonathan Majors' Kang the Conqueror is cooking up for the Marvel Universe.
Kaz made specific mention to how the Guardians of the Galaxy and Thor films expanded the cosmic side of the MCU, and both of those franchises played significant parts in the Infinity Saga's culminating films, Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. If this multiversal conflict is as big as the threat Thanos posed, the Avengers will need all the help they can get.
That said, marketing for Eternals makes clear that the ancient ensemble is only permitted to interfere in human conflict if Deviants are involved, hence their absence in Infinity War. Do those rules change with a threat from another timeline? Have the Eternals even been briefed on the existence of the multiverse? How do the Celestials factor into all of this?
Fans will get a better understanding when Eternals hits theaters on November 5.