Eternals Producer on Approach to Diversity and LGBTQ+ Representation

We're just over a week away from the debut of Marvel's Eternals, the latest blockbuster within the ever-evolving mythos of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Even before its release, the film has been praised for its star-studded ensemble cast, which also brings some major milestones in diversity for the superhero franchise. During a visit to the set of Eternals in early 2020, producer Nate Moore spoke about the film's movements for positive representation, and argued that it naturally makes its way into the film.

"Frankly, personally, I think diversity is important," Moore explained. "I think as filmmakers we want our audience reflected on the screen, and I think the great thing about Eternals is, it's just part of the narrative without having to talk about it. The Eternals were, to some degree, selected for this mission partially they could integrate into an Earth that does have sort of a sprawling identity in a very easy way, because they do look like — not everybody, but there is a nice cross section there. We wanted it to feel both like a natural extension of the storytelling, but also just a way for audience members — and kids, especially — to see themselves on screen maybe for the first time."

In particular, a lot of buzz has surrounded the debut of Phastos (Bryan Tyree Henry), the first openly-queer superhero within the MCU.

"Again, we think it's just who these people are," Moore added. "It doesn't have to be the whole story, because in life, that's not the whole story of anybody. I think it just feels more real. As storytellers, we're better storytellers if it's just part of who somebody is. It's very much a part of this movie, but the movie's not about that. It's just who the characters are."

"I want the film to be about the film, and I think we all do," Moore continued. "I think when you watch the movie, you'll get to discover in a way that feels organic rather than us sort of planting a flag and saying, 'Look guys, come see it for this reason.'"

This echoes comments recently made by Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige, who argued that Phastos' appearance in the film is "just the start" of representation in the larger saga.

"There have been gay heroes before in the comics. It is more than past time in the movies," Feige explained. "It's just the start."