Here’s something that will leave you surprised – one of the most iconic staples of Dune was almost borrowed by Marvel Studios’ Eternals.
While talking to CBR in an interview, Eternals screenwriters Kaz and Ryan Firpo revealed that the film’s early draft had a sandworm attack in the film’s script. However, it was later changed to feature a Deviant at Marvel’s request.
Here’s what they told CBR in an interview:
“We had sandworms in the original Eternals!” Kaz Firpo told CBR. “In Babylon, it was a sandworm that attacked, and they changed it because they were like, ‘Well, we think Dune may come out sometime around this.’ They weren’t supposed to go head-to-head, obviously; that just happened because of this pandemic we just had, that you may have heard of. Yeah, they weren’t supposed to go head-to-head, so –”
“Funny little factoid: we had actually a friends and family screening over the weekend at the Chinese [Theater], and just by coincidence, Denis [Villeneuve] was actually in the audience,” Ryan Firpo added. “He just slipped in to see it, I guess, with –”
“At the Chinese Theater in the back row with his partners and they were just watching Marvel’s Eternals!” Kaz Firpo pitched in. “Chloe [Zhao] has got a lot of love for Denis and vice versa. They’re very talented filmmakers. So, yeah, he was out there. He was supporting us on opening weekend. If Denis can do it, so can you!”
How Were Deviants Created?
The scene that’s in question happens midway through the film, during a Babylon flashback in 525 BC. It sees the Eternals defending a city against an attack by a Deviant right outside the Ishtar Gate – a structure that forms a gateway to the city. While the Firpos initially thought of the Deviant appeared as a Sandworm, it looked like a giant cat. Ultimately, Gilgamesh was able to defeat it with a few knocks with some help from Kingo, Makkari, Thena, and Ikaris.
It was revealed in Eternals that Deviants were created by Arishem to do the purpose served by Eternals – to let life thrive on a given planet. However, unlike Eternals, Deviants can evolve and so they did, becoming experts at killing and undoing Arishem’s noble purpose. While they were evolving, the Deviants took the form of the lifeforms on a planet, which explains the vision of a worm that Firpos had.
Eternals is now in theaters