Eternals Writers Explain Why Harry Styles' Eros Didn't Make The Main Character Lineup

Sorry Marvel bros, Harry Styles was part of the "Eternals" game from day one. In fact, according to Ryan and Kaz Firpo — who wrote the script alongside director Chloé Zhao and co-writer Patrick Burleigh — Styles' Starfox was originally considered as a main player in the film, not just the post-credits scene.

"[Eros was] definitely a card that went up on the board to be in the main movie" at the beginning of the process, Ryan told The Direct in an interview. "You know, when we first started doing our pitch, we basically just had all these cards of, let's say about 40 different Eternals, and we started kinda picking out the ones that we liked. And [Eros] is definitely a card that went up on the board to be in the main movie."

"But we eventually decided that we really wanted to concentrate on Sersi (Gemma Chan) and Ikaris' love story, and we just thought in the broader group dynamics, if there's Ikaris (Richard Madden), there can't really be Eros, too, because it feels like they're just kinda stepping on each other's toes."

As someone who (unabashedly) loves Styles, it's definitely a big of a "oh, what could have been" — but it's also understandable to make that sort of choice from a filmmaking perspective. If we have too many large characters in the mix, our main story gets lost. So, all in all, it ended up being a smart choice to relegate Eros to that post-credits life, for now. 

No Matter What, Eros Was Part of the Plan

It appears that Styles' character was always going to be part of the film somehow, though they were unsure originally in what form he would be best used. Ryan called the post-credits sequence "the perfect coda character to introduce, especially because he has that connection to Thanos."

"But we knew he was a great character who could potentially be our portal into the bigger world; bigger community of Eternals that lives out in the Cosmos. So eventually, we realized that he's the perfect coda character to introduce, especially because he has that connection to Thanos as well. So I would say that he was never involved in the main story, but always from very early on, there was the idea of introducing him in the post-credits."

Recently, Zhao spoke out about Styles' cameo and revealed either he would play the character or they just wouldn't include him at all — which says a lot about her confidence in him as a MCU character.

"Harry as Eros was very much a package deal for me. I pitched the idea of Pip the Troll and Eros to Kevin [Feige, Marvel Studios president] a while back. I love the idea of exploring an Eternal who is beyond Titan and who may have influenced Thanos throughout the years the same way Eternals influenced us, earthlings. It wasn't like I suggested Eros, and let's go find actors. I kept tabs on Harry since 'Dunkirk,' I thought he was very interesting. After meeting him, I realized he is that character—the same way I cast the rest of my cast. There's so much of Eros in him. For me, if he says yes and Kevin says yes then it's a go. And I'm very happy they both did."

There are already rumors that Styles will be a regular fixture in the MCU going forward — and might even get his own film to lead. However, nothing official has been announced as of yet (but I'll keep hoping).