Did Angelina Jolie Miss Out On A Major Superhero Role Before Embracing Eternals?

Explore the controversial journey of Angelina Jolie in the superhero genre, from rejecting a major role to embracing her character Thena in Eternals.

By Akshay Sharma
August 2,2023

Angelina Jolie, one of Hollywood’s iconic actresses, made her debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) with the 2021 film Eternals. However, long before she accepted the role of Thena, she had turned down another major superhero movie. In a 2021 interview, she discussed her reasons for entering the genre and her reluctance towards solo superhero films. Let’s delve into Angelina Jolie’s journey in the superhero realm, exploring her rejection of a famous superhero role and her eventual embrace of Thena in Eternals.

The Rejection Of A Mystery Superhero Role

Angelina Jolie

Before Angelina Jolie became part of the MCU, she revealed that she had declined a significant superhero role. In the 2021 interview with Empire Magazine, she mentioned this rejection without disclosing the character’s identity out of respect for the actress who eventually took on the part. Her decision to reject the role likely stemmed from her inclination towards character-driven stories rather than traditional superhero or sci-fi films.

Embracing The Role Of Thena In Eternals

Thena's PTSD

Despite her initial reluctance towards superhero roles, Angelina Jolie eventually accepted the part of Thena in the Academy Award-winning film Eternals. In the same 2021 interview with Empire Magazine, she revealed that after watching the script unfold, she felt that something unique was happening in the story. This feeling of depth and character-driven storytelling convinced her to be a part of the film, which introduced a new group of superheroes to the expanding MCU.

Challenges Of Introducing The Eternals

The Eternals

Kumail Nanjiani, who played Kingo in Eternals, shed light on the challenges the film faced in introducing a relatively unknown group of superheroes. He expressed that unlike popular characters like Spider-Man or Captain America, the Eternals were unfamiliar to many hardcore fans. Introducing all the Eternals in a single movie was no easy task, considering their complex backstories and connections within the MCU.

Angelina Jolie’s Perspective On Playing Thena

Thena's Vulnerability

In a CinePop interview in Brazil, Angelina Jolie discussed her thoughts on portraying Thena, her first superhero role. She explained that she had declined other superhero offers in the past because they did not feel like the right fit for her. However, the character of Thena intrigued her as she saw the Eternals as a family, and she wanted to be part of this illustrious MCU family. This sense of belonging to a larger narrative encouraged her to embrace the role.

No Interest In A Solo Thena Movie


While Angelina Jolie thoroughly enjoyed being a part of the MCU’s Eternals, she had no desire to star in a standalone Thena movie. In the same interview, she emphasized her love for the MCU family and expressed her willingness to reprise the role of Thena in future Marvel films. Jolie saw the potential in exploring Thena’s struggles and rich history over thousands of years. She enjoyed the idea of her character making appearances in other Marvel movies while remaining part of the larger narrative.


Thena's Angelina-Jolie-As-Thena
Thena’s Angelina-Jolie-As-Thena

Angelina Jolie’s journey in the superhero genre is a tale of rejecting a mystery superhero role before finding her place in the MCU as Thena in Eternals. Despite her initial reluctance towards superhero films, the character-driven and unique nature of the Eternals’ story convinced her to become a part of the film. While she has no interest in a solo Thena movie, she remains enthusiastic about exploring her character’s struggles in future Marvel films. Angelina Jolie’s contribution to the MCU has added a new dimension to the world of superheroes, and fans eagerly await her future appearances in the franchise.