Eternals Star Kumail Nanjiani got absolutely shredded for his Marvel role. But, in a recent profile from GQ, the actor revealed why he decided to transform his body. It turns out the secret reason for all that time in the gym is his love of Bollywood cinema. He describes feeling a bit of pressure about being "the first South Asian superhero" and wanting to look like other Marvel mainstays. But, even more personally, he remembers the Bollywood stars of previous decades and the impeccable shape that they kept themselves in. In order to pay tribute to that legacy, the comedian hit the gym and dedicated months to achieving those results. Nanjiani clearly has grown tired of talking about these muscles but stressed that this was his personal decision instead of a studio mandate. In fact, some fans would be surprised to learn that Chloe Zhao was shocked when he showed up to film. Read more of what he had to say down below:
"If I'm playing the first South Asian superhero, I want to look like someone who can take on Thor or Captain America, or any of those people," he explained. Then Nanjiani broke down how Bollywood figured into things. "From the '60s to the '90s I know basically every big [one]. I was like, I want this to be believable. I want to feel that kind of powerful in this role."
"With brown people, there are very specific roles that we used to get," he said later in the interview. "Either we're terrified or we're causing terror. Those are the only two options we had. Either I'm fixing your computer, or I'm, like, planning something at the stock exchange."
In a previous conversation with Total Film, the actor talked about his powers headed into Eternals. "He can shoot beams from his arms," Nanjiani shared. "From his hands, he shoots beams. Obviously, they add laser beams in post. I didn't go that method with it. I took martial arts and dance classes to figure out what his motion would be when he was shooting."
When the first decision was made to delay the movie, Nanjiani hyped the film and what's to come for all the fans.
"I know there isn't much news yet! I'm in the dark too, trust me. I can't wait for it, whenever it comes," he said on social media. "But I promise the movie will be worth the wait. It's the most exciting, fun, epic, thrilling, hilarious & moving project I've ever been a part of. And it's massive. The scale of it is unlike anything I've ever seen. I would walk on to shoot and be awestruck by the sets every day."
Do you think the actor will play a huge role in the MCU going forward? Let us know in the comments!