Marvel Studios has picked a director for its upcoming film adapting comics creator Jack Kirby’s classic The Eternals to the big screen. The Rider (2017) director Chloe Zhao has been picked by the studio to bring the screenplay written by Matthew and Ryan Firpo to life on the big screen.
Zhao has already had somewhat of a relationship with Marvel as she was on the shortlist to direct their Black Widow film which will star Scarlett Johansson as the titular Russian spy. That gig went to Cate Shortland.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Zhao beat out Travis Knight (Bumblebee, Kubo And The Two Strings), Nicole Kassell (the pilot for HBO’s upcoming Watchmen series) and Colombian directing duo Cristina Gallego and Ciro Guerra (Birds Of Passage).
For the uninitiated, the Eternals are a group of characters on Marvel Comics cosmic side. An offshoot of humanity created by the ancient, highly advanced alien race known as the Celestials as an experiment, the Eternals are locked in conflict with the Deviants, another, more monstrous off shoot of humanity also created by the Celestials.
Zhao’s hiring also solidifies a bit more of the plans that Marvel has in store for its Fourth Phase of films that will follow after the release of next May’s Avengers 4. Until now, The Eternals was just one of many scripts that the studio has in development. With Zhao attached, it looks as if the studio is getting serious about greenlighting the project for production. It is possible that the studio is even rushing to get in front of cameras to fill the space on their schedule created when Guardians Of The Galaxy Volume 3 was placed on hold following writer/director James Gunn’s firing.