Jack Kirby’s ultimate cosmic defenders stake a claim on Marvel’s Phase Four.
While we are still reeling and speculating on what comes after the devastation of Avengers: Infinity War, Marvel Studios is chugging full steam ahead on Phase Four. We hang on every word uttered from the mouth of Kevin Feige, hoping to grab a clue as to what characters are pinned to his dream board. He has hinted at several possibilities, and we’ve ranked their likelihood from definitely to maybe. How long will the House of Ideas make us wait until we get official word on the next group of spandex titans to invade our multiplex? Hopefully, not much longer.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Marvel has assigned the writers tasked to bring The Eternals to the big screen. Matthew and Ryan Firpo are a pair of cousins who recently made a splash with their spec script, Ruin. That story detailed the crimes of an ex-Nazi captain who sought redemption by stalking and killing members of his SS squadron. Their screenplay made its rounds through Hollywood after landing on the 2017 Black List.
The revenge saga of a sorrowful Nazi does not scream The Eternals. These superbeings are the spawn of the cosmic entities known as The Celestials (those giant space gods glimpsed wielding the Power Stone in Guardians of the Galaxy and brethren to Ego the Living Planet). They were originally engineered to be the champions of Earth, warring against their cataclysmic kin, The Deviants.
The comic was the brainchild of Jack Kirby. After fleeing Marvel and Stan Lee for DC Comics in 1970, Kirby let loose with his imagination by creating his galactic answer to Greek mythology, The New Gods. That comic proved to be an unsuccessful seller and was quickly canceled. Unable to shake these sci-fi concepts, Kirby returned to Marvel and basically continued The New Gods concept with The Eternals. It’s fascinating that both properties are now competing on the cinematic landscape. When it rains it pours, but it’s too bad he never lived to see this miracle happen.
Marvel Studios has never been one to match their characters with proven fantasy creators. No one could have possibly imagined The Russo Brothers as being the perfect fit for Captain America: The Winter Soldier let alone Avengers: Infinity War. Coming out of Cop Car, Jon Watts did not seem like the obvious choice for Spider-Man: Homecoming. Kevin Feige approaches filmmaking like a Baseball scout, always hunting for fresh talent to fill his bench.
Besides scoring acclaim for Ruin, The Firpos have been cranking out a variety of narrative and documentary shorts. Matthew Firpo landed on the Forbes 30 Under 30 in 2016 recognizing his achievement as co-founder of the Magna Carta production company. The cousins are ideal candidates for the Marvel bullpen, and their partnership is the first step to announcing them as major talents in Hollywood.
The Eternals has the potential to be as revolutionary an entry in the MCU as Guardians fo the Galaxy. As James Gunn revealed an infinite realm of intergalactic prospects, The Eternals could also spin off into a myriad of titles. This is the roster that the Inhumans once possessed in Fiege’s grand scheme. If they are blessed in casting, The Eternals could be worthy of their own narrative phases.