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Film and TV

Gay Marvel star says LGBT+ fans will be ‘so proud’ of Eternals’ ‘thoughtful’ same-sex couple

Emma Powys Maurice January 26, 2021
Haaz Sleiman Marvel

Actor Haaz Sleiman stars in Marvel's The Eternals (Frederick M. Brown/Getty)

Eternals actor Haaz Sleiman promises LGBT+ fans will be “so proud” to see Marvel’s first ever same-sex couple in the hotly-anticipated new film 

The Lebanese-American star plays the husband of superhero Phastos (Brian Tyree Henry), the first openly gay hero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe films.

As he promoted his latest movie, the rom-com Breaking Fast, Sleiman threw in a few teasers for eager Marvel fans and reassured queer audiences that the studio has gone to great lengths to ensure respectful treatment.

“It’s my first Marvel film, so of course, I’m excited,” he told NewNowNext.

“My gut feeling is you’ll be so proud. What Marvel has been able to accomplish, I’m so proud of them because they approached it in a very thoughtful way, and Phastos is one of the biggest superheroes in the film. I’m his husband, an architect; we have a child.”

But he admitted that he did wish he could’ve been the superhero – “because when will we see an Arab Muslim openly gay actor playing a superhero? I can’t wait to see it”.

Based on the comic book series of the same name, Eternals follows a race of immortal beings who lived on Earth and shaped its history and civilisations.

Sleiman spoke with the outlet last February after revealing that his character would be married with a child to Phastos, and that the couple would share an on-screen kiss.

“It’s a beautiful, very moving kiss. Everyone cried on set,” he revealed. “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.”

Eternals is scheduled for release later this year, though a firm opening date has yet to be announced due to COVID.

More: Brian Tyree Henry, marvel, The Eternals

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