‘Eternals’ Will Reportedly Launch Exclusively in Theaters

Marvel Studios and Disney have reportedly come to a decision regarding the release of the next Marvel Cinematic Universe film. Unlike Black Widow and some recent Disney films, Eternals will follow in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings‘ footsteps and premiere exclusively in theaters. This means that it will not simultaneously premiere in theaters and on Disney+ Premier Access.

Gemma Chan, star of 'Eternals,' attends a private dinner hosted by Michael Kors.
Gemma Chan | Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for Michael Kors

Hollywood insider says that ‘Eternals’ will premiere exclusively in theaters

According to IGN, Hollywood insider Matthew Belloni shared the news about Eternals‘ release in his “What I’m Hearing” newsletter. Disney and Marvel Studios have not yet confirmed the news.

Belloni wrote in his newsletter, “I’m told [Bob] Chapek and distribution chief Kareem Daniels have made their decision on the November movie’s fate, and it will indeed receive an exclusive theatrical run. Marvel’s Kevin Feige and Angelina Jolie’s agents can exhale now.”

The news of Eternals‘ theater exclusive release isn’t that surprising, given Shang-Chi’s and the Legend of the Ten Rings‘ success at the box office.

‘Shang-Chi’s’ success in theaters

Shang-Chi opened exclusively in theaters on Sept. 3 and it was an instant success, despite the added factor of the pandemic. Over opening weekend, its global box office total added up to $127.6 million.

Shang-Chi shattered records for Labor Day weekend, and Disney and Marvel Studios took notice. According to Belloni, “After Disney C.E.O. Bob Chapek basically dared Shang-Chi to perform in theaters over Labor Day weekend, and it did $94 million domestically, he couldn’t possibly put Eternals on Disney+ day-and-date, right?”

Shang-Chi‘s theatrical run was an experiment by Disney and Marvel Studios. And they now have proof that their films can still be successful in theaters in these times. So they have no reason not to premiere Eternals exclusively in theaters. Kevin Feige has also previously stated in a red carpet interview with Variety, “I think a theater would be my preference and [Eternals director] Chloé [Zhao’s] preference. We will see where we go with it.” You can check out Feige’s comments in the Twitter video below.

It will be interesting to see if any of Disney’s future movies will get the Disney+ Premier Access treatment after the success of Shang-Chi.


How are ‘Eternals’ different from the ‘Avengers’?

Everything we know about ‘Eternals’

Eternals is the next film to be released as a part of Phase Four in the MCU after Shang-Chi. The movie is directed by Chloé Zhao and has an ensemble cast of mostly newcomers to the MCU. The cast includes Gemma Chan, Richard Madden, Kumail Nanjiani, Lia McHugh, Brian Tyree Henry, Lauren Ridloff, Barry Keoghan, Don Lee, Salma Hayek, and Angelina Jolie as the Eternals. Like Shang-Chi, Eternals explores a new set of characters from Marvel Comics.

The premise of Eternals is “After the return of half the population in Avengers: Endgame ignites ‘the emergence,’ the Eternals, an immortal alien race created by the Celestials who have secretly lived on Earth for over 7000 years, reunite to protect humanity from their evil counterparts, the Deviants.”

Eternals is scheduled to be released on Nov. 5.