We already know that The Eternals will bring us the MCU’s first openly gay male lead in the form of Ikaris and with Thor: Love and Thunder set to explore Valkyrie’s sexuality as she looks for her queen, it’s becoming pretty clear that Marvel Studios is making every effort they can to address the lack of LGBTQ representation in their films so far.
In fact, back in November, executive vice president of production Victoria Alonso fully admitted that “the gay community has not been represented whatsoever,” adding, “I’m gay, so I can tell you that I would long for that.” And now, Marvel Studios producer Trinh Tran has weighed in on the situation as well.
Speaking with Inverse last month, she promised that both female representation and diversity are very importation to the company and that the future of the MCU will see many more diverse characters introduced into the fold.
Female representation, the diversity of it all, is very important because this is the world we live in. There’s so many different people out there and in order for us to relate to them, we have to make movies that are different. We can’t always be about one race or gender. That’s not the way to connect with the world.
I’m looking forward to Black Widow getting her own movie next year, Shang-Chi getting his due. This is the first step to more diverse characters and franchises. I am hoping for more down the line. We have so many characters in the Marvel Universe, it’s a matter of picking which one makes sense to the MCU. In thinking about the future of the MCU and how all those characters are gonna connect, diversity is crucial in our future.
I think we’re heading towards the right direction. Ten years ago when we started making these movies, you probably don’t see much of that.
Of course, Tran and Alonso are far from the only Marvel execs to have made comments like this and it’s clear that after the meteoric success of Black Panther, not to mention Captain Marvel as well, the studio’s now “emboldened” to pursue more diverse stories in Phase 4 and beyond. And like Tran mentions above, both Black Widow and Shang-Chi will take big steps towards addressing the lack of female-led movies and diverse heroes in the MCU.
With the DCEU looking to follow suit as well by introducing the first trans character in Batgirl and featuring a gay villain in Birds of Prey, it seems like people from all walks of life will soon be represented in the comic book movie genre. And frankly, that can only be a good thing.