Though Marvel Studios has now established itself as a world-conquering pop culture force, it’s easy to forget that before the MCU was first kicked off, most of the franchise’s biggest stars would’ve been pretty unfamiliar to the average filmgoer. So while much of the general public still has little idea of what to expect from The Eternals, producer Kevin Feige sees this as an opportunity to bring something new and exciting to our attention.
BionicBuzz caught up with the Marvel Studios head while he was attending the 2018 Ryan Arts BE A HERO Fundraiser and asked him to share his thoughts about the upcoming flick. And while the typically tight-lipped Feige didn’t give anything away about the movie’s content, he did offer his thoughts on the challenge of getting people hyped about a load of characters they’ve never heard of before:
“Very little when it comes to Eternals, but I will say your reaction about not being familiar with The Eternals is perfect because most people weren’t familiar with Guardians and believe it or not there were people who were not familiar with Avengers or with Iron Man. So for us it’s finding great stories whether people have heard of them or not and bring them to the big screen in as an amazing way as we can.”
It’s true that Guardians of the Galaxy didn’t have nearly the same pop culture presence before the 2014 film came out to a rapturous response. A big part of this success can almost certainly be attributed to the expanded universe model that the studio pioneered. Indeed, Feige explained earlier this year how the traditional post-credits scene was first introduced to make up for the lack of recognizable names in the saga by hinting at the larger world that Marvel Studios still had to offer:
“It occurred to us [while making Iron Man], ‘Well, we don’t have X-Men, we don’t have Fantastic Four, we don’t have Spider-Man, but we have everything else. Even though everything else hadn’t been turned into a big film before, or had the name recognition among non-comic-book readers that others ones did, we had the opportunity to start putting certain heroes in other heroes’ movies, which hadn’t been done before.”
These days, you could perhaps argue that the Marvel Studios brand does more to attract filmgoers than any individual characters. This would be one explanation for why MCU features like Guardians are so successful, while the less esteemed DCEU can put out a movie starring Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman, and have it still be a flop.
In short, though most filmgoers currently have no clue who or what The Eternals are, it feels safe to say that plenty of them will be showing up to take this cosmic trip. And if a recent report is anything to go by, the film won’t be hitting theaters until November 6th, 2020, giving Marvel Studios plenty of time to get the public pumped.