‘Eternals’ star Lauren Ridloff on being the first deaf superhero in the MCU

Ridloff as Makkari and Barry Keoghan as Druig/Marvel Studios

Lauren Ridloff may play a super-speedy, Deviant-fighting immortal named Makkari in Marvel’s Eternals, but her storyline is more human than alien.

The Tony-nominated actress, who is making history as the first deaf superhero in the MCU and is deaf herself, opened up to Good Morning America about what this role means to her — especially after she saw an ad for the movie in New York City’s Times Square.

Ridloff, who signed during the interview, as her character does in the movie, said seeing the trailer on a platform that big was “really overwhelming,” and she “started to realize the impact that this film is going to have.” She wanted to tell her own story in the role and hopes people connected to it — “whether they’re deaf, hard of hearing, Black, Mexican [or] women,” she said.

“It’s such an honor to be a part of a film like this where there’s a ton of us,” she added. “We’re so diverse and I think that a lot of people will feel seen.”

Eternals, directed by Oscar-winner Chloé Zhao, features a large ensemble cast including Angelina JolieSalma Hayek, Gemma ChanRichard MaddenKumail Nanjiani, Lia McHughBrian Tyree HenryBarry KeoghanDon LeeHarish Patel and Kit Harington, along with Ridloff.

Ridloff recounted a scene in which Zhao wanted to make a sonic boom sound on the set to depict how fast her character was moving and, when the assistant director offered her a pair of earplugs, she said she didn’t need them.

“It’s not always a challenge [being deaf] and sometimes it can be helpful,” she explained. “That’s a perfect moment of deaf gain.”

Eternals hits theaters Friday, Nov. 5.

Marvel Studios is owned by Disney, the parent company of ABC News.

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