Marvel never asked actor Richard Madden to dye his hair blonde or change his accent for his role in Eternals. Madden plays Ikaris, who has traditionally had blonde hair in his comic book incarnation. Created by Jack Kirby in 1976, Ikaris is an Eternal, created by the Celestials thousands of years ago, endowed with superhuman abilities meant to protect and guide humanity. Ikaris’ first appearance shows him with long blonde locks and he is fitted in a blue and red suit with three circular shaped patterns on his chest.
Eternals is directed by Oscar winner Chloe Zhao and stars Madden, Gemma Chan, Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek, Kumail Nanjiani, Lia McHugh, Lauren Ridloff, Ma Dong-seok, Bryan Tyree Henry and Barry Keoghan. The film is set in the MCU’s Phase Four film series, which ushers in a new era for the franchise universe, introducing a host of new characters, which began with last month. Shang-Chi and the legend of the ten rings. Eternals will be the first live-action achievement of the characters in the MCU.
During the Eternals visit scheduled for January 2020, Screen cry and other venues were on hand to talk to the filmmakers about the film, including producer Nate Moore, who gave a preview of Ikaris’ appearance in the film. In the live-action Eternals film, Ikaris is presented as a short brunette and sports a blue and gold costume, which similarly replicates the comic book uniform minus the red trim. When asked if they had ever considered having actor Richard Madden become blond for the role in order to appear more faithful to the comics, Moore replied that not only did they not ask him to dye his hair, but that they also made him keep his accent, saying, “We didn’t ask him to go blonde. So he basically keeps his hair natural and the Scottish accent which made him very excited.”
Madden has already cut his teeth on projects like HBO’s Game of Thrones, bodyguard, and Rocket man. Also joining Madden in the movie is another Game Of Thrones star Kit Harington, who played Jon Snow in the series and plays Dane Whitman in Eternals, a character who eventually becomes The Black Knight. Snow was the “half-brother” of Robb Stark from Madden, so the two actors have a strong history together in the mega-popular series. It is not known if any of them will share the screen time in Eternals, but it’s still a reunion from a casting point of view.
Many adaptations of the comic book to the film alter the appearance of the characters and Ikaris is just another link in that chain. In the end, blonde hair seems less important to the character than origin, powers, and performance, so it’s easy to overlook this aspect lost in translation. Jack Kirby created a massive backstory for these characters, which is far more important than removing all the colors and tints from the page and showing them on the screen. With such a diverse and talented cast, Eternals is already set to make a box office sensation and is sure to make these longtime comic book characters household names just like Iron Man, Captain America, and Thor did years ago.