'Eternals': Marvel debuts largest-ever cast of diverse superheroes

Most of the stars say they were shocked when they got the call to be in the most epic and ambitious Marvel film to date.
PHILADELPHIA -- When "Eternals" hits theaters Friday, Marvel will debut its largest-ever cast of superheroes. The star-studded lineup is also its most diverse.

The "Eternals" are bringing visibility and representation to people who have never seen themselves on screen this way, and certainly never in a super suit.

Most of the stars say they were shocked when they got the call to be in the most epic and ambitious Marvel film to date.

EMBED More News Videos

Alicia Vitarelli talks with the cast of Eternals



"There's representation that just simply hasn't existed and should have existed for a long time," says Angelina Jolie, who plays Thena.

From race to culture, to age and beyond, the "Eternals" are as diverse as the planet they're here to protect.

"It feels meaningful," says Salma Hayek, who plays Ajak, the leader of the "Eternals."

"I understood what it was going to mean to a lot of girls, Latino girls, Arab girls, brown girls like me, girls that just never thought they would see themselves as a superhero," Hayek says. "Because historically, they hadn't."

Kingo is Marvel's first South Asian superhero.

"Growing up, I never saw anybody in superhero movies that looked like me," says Kumail Nanjiani, who plays Kingo. "In fact, most of the people that look like me in Hollywood movies were the bad guys."

Makkari is saving the world with sign language.

"It's about time," says Lauren Ridloff, who plays Makkari. "What took these people so long to bring in a deaf superhero? A lot of people will now be exposed to a deaf Black Mexican woman who's doing some really powerful things."

Makkari, Salma Hayek's Ajak, and Lia McHugh's Sprite were all originally men in the comics.

"They changed a few of the characters to women, which I thought was a great addition to the team," McHugh says. "You will see some really cool warriors come through."

Phastos is Marvel's first gay superhero.

"I hope we're moving towards a point where it's just completely normalized and it's not a big deal to see a cast like this," says Gemma Chan, who plays Sersi.

EMBED More News Videos

Alicia Vitarelli talks with the cast of Eternals



Disney is the parent company of this station.
Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.