In an era in which the superhero genre has been stereotyped as repetitive and overly similar, Oscar-winner Chloe Zhao is looking to stand out from the crowd with Eternals.
With an expansive cast of powerful new heroes played by A-list actors, Eternals will take place across 7000 years of the MCU timeline, from the depths of history to the post-Endgame modern world.
As this film is set to serve as the origin for a multitude of ancient heroes, fans have long anticipated that much of the film will be spent hopping through history. Now that release is just a few short weeks away, moviegoers seem to have finally got their answer as to how much of Marvel's blockbuster will take place after Avengers: Endgame.
How Much of Eternals is Post-Endgame?
Back in January 2020 during the productions of Eternals, ComicBook.com was able to visit the set of the Chloe Zhao blockbuster and learned several interesting facts about how it fits into the MCU timeline.
During the visit, Eternals producer Nate Moore explained “years have not passed” since the events of Avengers: Endgame and “It could be concurrent” to the London-set Spider-Man: Far From Home:
“It could be concurrent [to Spider-Man: Far From Home]. Again, they sort of operate on a different system. Although, Far From Home does take place in London, ironically. So it's sort of an undefined time. I don't think it's, years have not passed, I will say that.”
Eternals will take place in several locations throughout history, including present-day London in the MCU. Moore estimated that 60% of the film would be set in the present and 40% of its run time would be spent in various points in history.
The Marvel producer went on to estimate 60% of the film will take place in the post-Endgame present-day while the remainder of the run time will explore various points of history.
Based on the newly revealed 156 minute run time and an estimated 12 minutes of credits, roughly 86 minutes of Eternals should take place in the modern era while leaving around 58 minutes for the historical era-hopping.
Moore revealed Avengers: Endgame doesn't “directly affect” Eternals, although the team is aware of the events and fans will “get to hear their opinion about what happened and why maybe they didn't get involved.” While the movie does take place in the modern world, it isn't a direct follow-up as far as the storytelling is concerned:
“So it's a big cosmic crazy movie set on earth over 7,000 years. [The events of Avengers: Endgame] don't directly affect [Eternals], although the Eternals are quite aware of what happened in the Endgame and what happened with Thanos, and you sort of get to hear their opinion about what happened and why maybe they didn't get involved. So it is both in a post-Endgame world, but isn't a direct line, as far as storytelling.”
Is Eternals a Prequel or Sequel?
It's interesting to hear Moore say Avengers: Endgame doesn't directly affect Eternals as the latest trailer seemed to strongly imply it was the sudden resurrection of the population that cause the emergence of the Deviants. While that may have been a simple misdirect in the trailer, it's far more likely Moore wanted to avoid saying too much as this interview was conducted almost two years before release.
Since Eternals seems to be exploring the consequences of Hulk's Avengers: Endgame snap, it's hardly surprising to hear the bulk of the film will take place in the present day. The historical elements may have occasional tie-ins to the past of the wider MCU, but most of that time will likely be devoted to giving Eternals' expansive new cast of heroes a worthy origin.
Moore's comments regarding some of Eternals taking place in London somewhat concurrently to Spider-Man: Far From Home are certainly interesting. Given Mysterio had most of the world fooled that his Elemental illusions were a multiversal threat arriving to destroy the entire universe, perhaps some of the ancient heroes will visit London to join or observe the wall-crawler's fight.
Although since Kit Harrington's Dane Whitman seems to have British origins much like the actor himself, the film's London scenes may instead be used to introduce his character who is set to become a key player in the MCU going forward.
Eternals hits theaters on November 5, 2021.