Zhao on Directing Marvel's "Eternals"


Director Chloe Zhao has been slowly earning her place among prestigious filmmakers with her smaller indie films, most recently the award-contender Nomadland. But she's been exploring multiple creative avenues as simultaneously she got hired by Marvel to direct one of their most unique pictures in the upcoming Phase 4 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Eternals also was written by Zhao, a rarity seen in the MCU, and as such she has a very specific eye for the process in the upcoming spectacle. Speaking with Margaret Gardiner (via The Playlist), Zhao was specific in noting that the writing is hers for the script:

“I am the writer on Eternals, the credits just aren’t updated yet. I don’t know what it would be like if I didn’t write the film if I wasn’t at least a huge part of the writing process. So yeah I haven’t experienced that in my career, I’m scared of that if that happens one day.
In the writing process, that’s sort of where I bring my sensibility in, that’s a huge part of it. And creating situations that will allow certain kinds of cinematic language to come in, that is something that I’ve learned from my last three films.”

That's not to say she was a woman on an island as obviously the shift from indie films to big budget superhero projects was a challenging transition and she praises marvel for helping her with this transition which helped her to focus on the more intimate character-driven aspects she's used to handling:

“I think what Marvel has been so incredible at – Kevin [Feige] and Nate [Moore] and the whole team – they knew from the moment I pitched the film, I really wanted the scope and scale at the same time as the intimacy. They knew I wanted both.
They have been so incredible holding my hand through the entire process of allowing me to go as far as possible and as small as possible, and how that fits into the whole MCU. It’s been a pretty incredible process. You’ll have to wait and see.”

With any luck, things will go according to plan with the COVID-19 vaccine distribution allowing life to return to relative normal by the Fall and thus allowing MCU fans to return to the theater to see Eternals with it's currently set November 5th release date. Only time will tell.

Eternals stars Angelina Jolie, Richard Madden, Kumail Nanjiani, Lauren Ridloff, Brian Tyree Henry, Salma Hayek, Lia McHugh, Don Lee, Kit Harington, Gemma Chan, and Barry Keoghan.

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