Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings was only released last weekend, but there is just eight weeks to go until the next Marvel blockbuster comes along, with two-time Academy Award winning filmmaker Chloé Zhao’s Eternals finally arriving a year behind schedule on November 5th.
It was reported that Marvel Studios and Disney were locked in discussions over how to proceed in regards to the movie’s theatrical rollout, with the Delta variant continuing to impact business in a major way. The outcome of the crunch talks were said to be largely dependent on how Shang-Chi fared, and if the martial arts fantasy epic had under-performed commercially, then a Premier Access hybrid debut for Eternals wasn’t off the table.
However, former Hollywood Reporter editor Matthew Belloni’s What I’m Hearing newsletter has offered that the cosmic book ensemble epic will remain the exclusive property of theaters, with Shang-Chi‘s record-breaking Labor Day haul and $140 million global first frame the deciding factor.
Kevin Feige didn’t even want Black Widow to go to streaming, so he’ll be thrilled that Shang-Chi vastly exceeding expectations and projections will see Eternals premiere exclusively in theaters. It’s been a rocky eighteen months for the industry to put it lightly, but the MCU continues to thrive in the face of adversity, with the franchise boasting the two biggest domestic opening weekends of the pandemic era.
As the most popular and successful film series in the history of cinema, it’s reasonable to expect Eternals to complete the trifecta when the ambitious intergalactic tale spanning thousands of years comes to multiplexes across the country.