Chloe Zhao recently made heads turn at the 93rd Academy Awards by winning the Best Director as well as the Best Picture Award. Her film, Nomadland actress Frances McDormand also won the award for Best Actress. Notably, Zhao who was born in Beijing, is the first woman of colour to receive the Best Director Award and the only second woman since Kathryn Bigelow (for 2009's The Hurt Locker).
While netizens were excited to see Zhao take the stage more than once at the Oscars, Marvel fans were especially elated as the filmmaker has directed the upcoming MCU film The Eternals. During an interaction with Variety.com, Chloe opened up about the win and her next release.
According to the report, Zhao who is a fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe approached the studio herself. She was set to direct the Black Widow, but took herself off the list. Soon after, she along with Marvel executive Nate Moore started working on the pitch for The Eternals, which is set to release in November 2021.
Zhao told Variety that she was supposed to work on (editing process) Nomadland after finishing The Eternals with Marvel Studios, but ended up finishing it first because of the pandemic. Talking about the critical acclaim for the film, she said, "We had a really fortunate [awards] season, and I got to thank a lot of people along the way."
"I have gone through ups and downs in my relatively short career. And one thing I've learned is a bit of a cliché, but everything does happen for a reason. We never expected Nomadland to resonate the way it did. But everything worked out," she added.
Talking about directing The Eternals, she said collaborating with Marvel was an "incredible experience." She revealed that the studio backed her vision for the film and she wants the audience to know about the "support of this incredibly talented team, some of the most talented artists in the world. And it really is a village to make this film, but they did let me lead."
Chloe who is used to working on films with smaller crews said, "props to Marvel". She said that the studio quickly adjusted to how she wanted to run things on her set. "They very much adapted how to run the set the way that I wanted to work. I'm still surrounded by 25 people. They just have armies, and each of them knew they needed to keep the army away," Zhao added.
The Eternals written by Matthew and Ryan Firpo, stars Richard Madden, Gemma Chan, Kumail Nanjiani, Lauren Ridloff, Brian Tyree Henry, Salma Hayek, Lia McHugh, Don Lee, Barry Keoghan, Angelina Jolie and Kit Harington in pivotal roles.