Thor: Love and Thunder featured an unexpected appearance from Eternity, one of Marvel's most powerful beings from the comics. Serving as one of the cosmic entities, the character is described as the sum of all life and all things that exist in the universe.
In the MCU, however, Eternity's role in the larger universe has yet to be determined, but Thor 4 did establish the being on the big screen. In the movie, it was revealed that the first person to reach Eternity would be granted a wish, which ultimately fell to Christian Bale's Gorr the God Butcher.
However, Love and Thunder also uncovered that Eternity didn't speak at all, leaving many to believe that this will be the character's portrayal moving forward.
Now, a new interesting tidbit has established that this wasn't the case at first.
Marvel VFX Supervisor Explains Why Eternity Casting Didn't Happen
In an exclusive interview with Josh Wilding of ComicBookBovie.com, Thor: Love and Thunder VFX supervisor Jake Morrison shared more details about the inclusion of Eternity in the movie and why the studio decided to not cast a Morgan Freeman-like actor for the role.
When asked about the challenges of bringing Eternity to life, Morrison first admitted that it went through "a lot of different options" while also revealing that he asked Marvel Studios if they are going to cast someone like Morgan Freeman (who previously played God in Bruce Almighty and Evan Almighty) to play the character:
“Well… it certainly we went through a lot of different options to get to that. But I think we all kind of felt that sometimes, you know less is more really. And so, you either go fully realized… and I was asking that the filmmakers like, ‘Are we gonna cast somebody for this? Is this ultimately gonna, be you know, like Morgan Freeman’s playing God again? … Are we going to do that, because if we are, I’d like to know sooner, so I can go and get scans and things like that.’"
The Marvel VFX supervisor then pointed out that the studio noted that "the moment" really belongs to Chris Hemsworth's Thor, Natalie Portman's Jane Foster, and Christian Bale's Gorr, and adding another actor who plays Eternity "could distract from a heavy, emotional scene:"
"And they just really felt that… I thought this was super smart… This Taika [Waititi] and the gang at Marvel, that that moment really… belongs to the three actors. And if you suddenly stuck another big CG creature in there who’s gonna you know throw out a bunch of dialogue… it could distract from a heavy, emotional scene, frankly."
Morrison then touched on how Marvel gave them "a lot of freedom" on how to portray Eternity in the movie, with the studio even giving them a file of "every single frame in order of Marvel canon where Eternity ever spoke:"
"And they gave us like a lot of freedom in VFX to make what I think was a pretty brave choice to go as simple… The great thing about working at Marvel is they’ve got the archives, so if you want to see… I literally received like a PDF of like, ‘Oh and here’s every single frame in order of Marvel canon where Eternity ever spoke.’ When you get stuff like that. you’re like, like Sunday lunch is reading through all this stuff like on the iPad. I was kind of really pleased where it ended up, just because it’s not distracting… It has a Southern Oracle feel to it [from The Neverending Story], I think without being… It’s imposing, it’s there, it’s a big figure, it looms over the scene, but you never lose focus on Atreyu in that scene.”
Why Eternity's Non-Speaking Role Benefits Thor 4
Eternity is already a powerful and imposing being, meaning that adding a speaking aspect to the character could have its own negative effect from the perspective of Thor 4. In a way, Marvel Studios' justification makes sense, considering the powerful portrayal of the three actors involved in the film's ending.
Still, casting a Morgan Freeman-like actor is possible if Eternity does return in a future MCU project. However, Thor 4 didn't establish if the character will return, especially after it already achieved its purpose.
Eternity not speaking in Love and Thunder joins the long list of changes that Marvel Studios incorporated in the movie alongside the design of Gorr the God Butcher and Zeus' radically different role (based on the deleted scenes).
While these changes aren't really the main subject of criticism for the movie, it establishes the idea that there are aspects that worked better, essentially making Thor 4 stand out from its predecessors.
Thor: Love and Thunder is now streaming on Disney+.