HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 04: (L-R) Executive Producer Victoria Alonso and President of Marvel Studios/Producer Kevin Feige attend the Los Angeles World Premiere of Marvel Studios' "Captain Marvel" at Dolby Theatre on March 4, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney)

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is evolving into a much more inclusive franchise. Black Panther and Captain Marvel are just the beginning of Marvel Studios making a more concerted effort to represent the modern, global audience that watches its films on the big screen.

This includes bringing openly LGBTQ+ characters into the MCU. “The world is ready,” Marvel Studios Executive Vice President of Physical Production Victoria Alonso told Variety when asked about having an openly gay superhero in the MCU.

Last week, That Hashtag Show reported that Marvel Studios was looking for an openly gay actor for one of the lead roles in The Eternals. Alonso would not confirm that specific report, but she discussed casting for the film in vague terms.

“We are going to cast the best Eternals cast that we can,” she said, “and when we’re ready to announce it we promise you we will.”

In June 2018, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige told The Playlist that there would be multiple LGBTQ+ characters in the MCU in the near future. At least one would be a character we’ve already seen while at least one more would be a character we have yet to meet.

Marvel Studios has not made the news official, but The Eternals is going to be released on November 6, 2020. That certainly qualifies as the near future, so The Eternals could be the film that gives us a new, openly gay character in the MCU.

“Why wouldn’t we be? Why wouldn’t we be?” Alonso responded when asked about Marvel Studios being so focused on diversity. “I’m so passionate about this I’ve got to tell you. Our entire success is based on people that are incredibly different. Why wouldn’t we? Why would we only want to be recognized by only one type of person?

“Our audience is global, is diverse, is inclusive. If we don’t do it that way for them, we will fail. If we don’t put [the pedal] to the metal on the diversity and the inclusivity, we will not have continued success. Our determination is to have that for all of the people out there watching our movies.”

SOURCE: Variety