Eternals Star Kumail Nanjiani Is Not A Dancer, Was Tricked Into Doing A Bollywood Dance Scene

There's been much discussion about Kumail Nanjiani since the announcement of his casting in "Eternals," namely, the unhealthy obsession people have had regarding his body transformation. However, back in March of 2020, Nanjiani announced that "Enternals" would have a Bollywood dance scene, something unlike anything ever seen in a Marvel movie. Nanjiani first spoke about the scene on the New Hollywood Podcast saying:

"A lot of it takes place in the present day. My character, for instance, is like 'OK we're supposed to keep a low profile, no one should know.' So I become a Bollywood movie star, that's my secret identity. We're supposed to keep quiet and I've become the biggest Bollywood movie star."

Filming a superhero movie requires an immense about of physicality, but for Nanjiani, transforming into a Bollywood star and having to dance the traditional choreography was the most difficult part of filming the movie. Nanjiani grew up watching Bollywood movies, but confessed in an interview with Entertainment Weekly that he is not a dancer, joking "You know, there's like 52 dancers, and 51 of them are professional dancers, and then there's me!"

Hilariously enough, it looks like Nanjiani didn't realize the Bollywood Dance was part of the plan when signing up for "Eternals." /Film's own Hoai-Tran Bui attended a press conference for "Eternals" today and got the full scoop.

Chloé Zhao Tricked Kumail Nanjiani into Dancing

From the "Eternals" press conference Hoai-Tran Bui attended, Nanjiani totally (but playfully!) called out Zhao. "I'm gonna put Chloé in the spot," he said. "I can't swear, so put in a swear word here, Chloé lied to me." The Academy Award-winning director could sense Nanjiani's hesitancy to fulfill the Bollywood dancing, so she told a little white lie to get him in on the plan. He continued at the press conference saying:

"When we first talked about the movie she was like there's a Bollywood dance sequence and I was like 'Chloé, I don't think I could do that.' She's like, 'Okay, we'll make it a Bollywood action scene.' And then as soon as I got to London she says, 'It's a dance.' And I was like, get me a dance teacher right now — Nileeka [Bose] who did the choreography was wonderful — she worked with me for months and months to do that, because it was so outside my comfort zone. But really, you know, ultimately, for me, all that came down to trust."

Zhao clearly believed Nanjiani could do it, even if he didn't believe he could, and now all of us will be blessed with a Bollywood dance scene starring our favorite hunky funnyman. Thanks, Chloé!

"Eternals" debuts in theaters on November 5, 2021.