Next November, The Eternals hits theaters and with it, will bring forth the Marvel Cinematic Universe's first Deaf superhero. The Tony-nominated Lauren Ridloff has been cast as Makkari, the Eternals' equivalency of a speedster. Ridloff, who was born Deaf, might be best known to fans after landing the role of Connie on The Walking Dead beginning with Season Nine. That said, the actor's career is virtually just beginning.
After graduating from California State Northridge, Ridloff then furthered her education at New York's Hunter College before becoming a grade school teacher. Though her first film credit is the indie If You Could Hear My Own Tune, Ridloff's first professional film credit came with 2017's Wonderstruck. Ridloff's Tony nomination came after her work on Children of a Less God, where she was nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role in a Play.
"There is an increased interest in casting more actors who are deaf, but there is still a woeful paucity of deaf talent behind the scenes, involved with the writing process," Ridloff told ABC News earlier this year. "I feel that with more representation working behind the camera, the stories that are told in television, film and stage would become more intriguing, truthful and thought provoking."
The Eternals will be helmed by Chloe Zhao from a script by Matthew and Ryan Firpo. The film will star Richard Madden (Ikaris), Kumail Nanjiani (Kingo), Lauren Ridloff (Makkari), Brian Tyree Henry (Phastos), Salma Hayek (Ajak), Lia McHugh (Sprite), Don Lee (Gilgamesh), and Angelina Jolie as Thena.
The Eternals is set for release on November 6, 2020. Other upcoming Marvel Studios projects include Black Widow on May 1, 2020, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier in fall 2020, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on February 12, 2021, WandaVision in spring 2021, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on May 7, 2021, What If? In summer 2021, Hawkeye in fall 2021, and Thor: Love and Thunder n November 5, 2021.
What characters were you surprised to see cast in the film? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or by tweeting me at @AdamBarnhardt to chat all things MCU!