Last year Marvel released Eternals and the ambitious superhero flick starring a family of immortal aliens proved to be a stretch too far for the interconnected comic book universe, as the film earned the lowest score of any MCU movie to date.
However, it would appear that Marvel bigwigs haven’t been totally put off by the film's tepid reception as Eternals 2 is reportedly in the works. This rumor comes by way of a thread on Reddit (opens in new tab), from “sources that have been proved legit over time” according to the forums moderator team.
As reported by TechRadar (opens in new tab), the post claims that Eternals 2 is “on track” but that the first movie faced many production issues that Marvel Studios don’t want to repeat those mistakes. To this end, it’s claimed that director Chloe Zhao will either have her creative freedom “heavily restricted” or may not even return to helm the sequel at all. The leaker even suggests the latter situation is more likely.
There is no information on casting or which characters would return for an Eternals sequel but we can presume the likes of Sersi (Gemma Chan), Kingo (Kumail Nanjiani), Phastos (Brian Tyree Henry) and Druig (Barry Keoghan) would all feature. Although for now the above information is all just speculation, as Marvel hasn’t officially confirmed that Eternals 2 has been greenlit.
Should Marvel make an Eternals 2?
Marvel Studios moving forward with an Eternals 2 would come as something of a surprise considering the first film’s poor reception. Eternals earned the dubious honor of being the first ever MCU movie to be rated rotten on review aggregate site Rotten Tomatoes (opens in new tab).
The film earned a very disappointing 47% with critics complaining about its abundance of new characters, plodding pacing and unsatisfying plot. It’s also the worst-rated MCU movie on IMDb (opens in new tab), pulling a 6.3 rating. Even the commonly-considered MCU low points, Iron Man 2 and Thor: The Dark World, currently rank higher.
The film’s place in the broader MCU has also been questioned since its release last November. The film ended with a giant Celestial being emerging from the Indian Ocean before the Eternals stop it from destroying the world. After which several of the Eternals were kidnapped by another Celestial at the end of the movie. None of these events have been referred to in the glut of MCU projects that have followed. This is odd when you consider that most people on Earth probably would have noticed a giant titan in the sky, and might have had something to say about it.
This bizarre refusal to mention the events of Eternals in other MCU movies/TV Shows has led to speculation that Marvel is trying to erase the film from its universe, but this rumor would indicate otherwise. And, in fairness, considering their place in the comic books it seems only right that Marvel gives the Eternals another chance to make an impression.
Created by the legendary Jack Kirby, the Eternals while never as popular as the Avengers, X-Men or Guardians of the Galaxy, have developed a passionate following of their own since they debuted in 1976. There are plenty of worthwhile stories to tell about these uber-powerful beings, and it would be great to see them undergo something of a redemption arc thanks to a high-quality follow-up.
Not to mention, the ending of the first Eternals film certainly suggests there’s more to come from these characters. The Celestial Arishem kidnapped some of the group in order to judge if humanity is worth sparing, and that plot point still needs resolving. Plus, the film’s mid-credits sequences introduced Harry Styles as Eros, Thanos’ brother, and it’s very unlikely Marvel won’t want to bring a name as big as Styles into the MCU fold properly.
Marvel Studios is set to hold a panel at San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday, July 23 at 1.30 p.m. ET which could serve as the perfect venue to announce that the Eternals will be returning in the future. Of course, even if a sequel is confirmed to be in the works, it’s unlikely we’ll see it for several years, as Marvel may want suitable breathing room between the two installments.
In the meantime, the MCU machine continues to churn out content at a remarkable rate. Thor: Love & Thunder only just hit theatres, but Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is just around the corner. Plus, now that Ms. Marvel has wrapped up on Disney Plus attention turns to She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, which arrives on the streaming service next month.
Next: Marvel Phase 5 and 6 confirmed — here’s all the new movies and shows. The House of the Dragon trailer is good enough to make you care about Game of Thrones again. Also, The Gray Man release date is almost here.