‘The Eternals’ Actor Reveals Marvel’s First Openly Gay Superhero

Marvel has taken a little bit of heat for the way it’s handled LGBTQ representation, which is to say they’ve sorta done it undercover. Whether it’s the is she/isn’t she status of Tessa Thompson’s Valkyrie, or that lame scene at the beginning of Avengers: Endgame, let’s just say Marvel could do better. With The Eternals, we’ve known from the beginning that it would feature the first openly gay superhero in the MCU, and it seems they aren’t kidding because now we know which one of the cosmic characters it will be.

Actor Haaz Sleiman (maybe best known for The Visitor, in which he’s great) spoke to NewNowNext about his small role in Eternals, and revealed that he’ll be playing the husband to that openly gay character. Turns out it’ll be Brian Tyree Henry’s character, Phastos, the team’s cosmic-powered inventor…

“I just shot a Marvel film with the first openly gay superhero, ‘The Eternals,’” Sleiman said. “I’m married to the gay superhero Phastos, played by ‘Atlanta’s’ Brian Tyree Henry, and we represent a gay family and have a child.”


It’s easy to be skeptical given Marvel’s track record, though. But Sleiman confirms this won’t be ambiguous or kept in the background, and that we’ll actually see a kiss between the two male characters…

Oh, yeah, absolutely, and it’s a beautiful, very moving kiss,” Sleiman said. “Everyone cried on set. For me, it’s very important to show how loving and beautiful a queer family can be. Brian Tyree Henry is such a tremendous actor and brought so much beauty into this part, and at one point I saw a child in his eyes, and I think it’s important for the world to be reminded that we in the queer community were all children at one point. We forget that because we’re always depicted as sexual or rebellious. We forget to connect on that human part.”


We’ll get to see how big of a step Marvel takes here when The Eternals opens on November 6th.


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