Marvel has released a short teaser trailer for its hotly anticipated superhero film “Eternals” starring Syrian refugee-turned-actor Zain Al-Rafeea alongside a star-studded cast that includes Salma Hayek, Angelina Jolie and Richard Madden.
Now 16-year-old Al-Rafeea, who gained prominence for his role in Lebanese filmmaker Nadine Labaki’s critically-acclaimed “Capernaum,” appears for a couple of seconds in the two-minute long trailer for the Chloe Zhao-directed movie about an immortal alien race.
While the trailer gives away little to no details on the plot, if the clip is anything to go by, Al-Rafeea stars as a villager who comes across the Eternals when they arrive to Earth.
Rumors of Al-Rafeea joining the cast of the film first surfaced in 2019 after Hayek uploaded a picture of herself with the former Syrian refugee and “Eternals” co-star Lia Mchugh on Instagram.
“Hanging with the Eternals’ youth,” Hayek, who plays the leader of the Eternals, Ajak, captioned the Instagram post.
“The introduction happened through Nadine. Directors and producers from Hollywood talked to her and she put us in touch,” Al-Rafeea said in a previous interview with Arab News.
The actor revealed that he met his fellow cast members on the Canary Islands during the early stages of filming. “They were nice and their welcome to me was very sweet,” he said. “They invited me for lunch and we chatted for hours, I felt so happy.
“When we finished the first day’s shooting, Salma Hayek came up and hugged me. That night she gave me an iPad and iPhone, and we chatted and listened to music together,” he said.
The teenage star couldn’t reveal much about his role in “The Eternals,” only that he joins the alien heroes as a human who can speak a mysterious 7,000-year-old language.
“Eternals” is set for theatrical release on Nov. 5, 2021.