During the press circuit for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Kevin Feige revealed the martial arts fantasy blockbuster was a movie he’d wanted to make for almost 20 years, having scribbled down a list of titles he envisioned coming to the big screen at the very beginning of his producorial career, long before the Marvel Cinematic Universe even existed.
Eternals hasn’t been at the back of his mind for quite as long, but new book The Story of Marvel Studios: The Making of the Marvel Cinematic Universe via ScreenRant reveals that the earliest stages of development on the project began a decade ago, when future Black Panther scribe Joe Robert Cole was brought into the Marvel writers’ room.
During that period, the scribe also penned drafts of a Deathlok solo film that never went anywhere, as well as Eternals and a new take on Blade. While Chloé Zhao’s sci-fi epic and Bassam Tariq’s reboot of the Daywalker will bear very few if any similarities to Cole’s work in their current form, it’s nonetheless another example of just how long Feige’s long game really is.
Eternals finally comes to theaters on November 5, and while the company’s Chief Creative Officer admitted he’d never have made it without Zhao at the helm, he’s clearly been toying with the concept for quite a while before she came on board.