Speaking to NewNowNext, actor Haaz Sleiman discussed his character’s relationship with Phastos. “I’m married to the gay superhero Phastos, played by Atlanta’s Brian Tyree Henry, and we represent a gay family and have a child,” Sleiman explained.
“It’s a beautiful, very moving kiss. Everyone cried on set. For me, it’s very important to show how loving and beautiful a queer family can be.
“Brian Tyree Henry is such a tremendous actor and brought so much beauty into this part, and at one point I saw a child in his eyes, and I think it’s important for the world to be reminded that we in the queer community were all children at one point. We forget that because we’re always depicted as sexual or rebellious; we forget to connect on that human part.”
It’s not the first time this week that a new MCU film has been linked to increased LGBTQ representation. On Thursday (February 13), Thor: Love And Thunder director Taika Waititi expressed his desire to give Valkyrie a queer storyline in the new film.
A similar storyline was shot for 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok, but eventually cut from the final edit.
It was then revealed by Valkyrie actor Tessa Thompson last year that her character is bisexual, after she was accused of being a “typical sexless Marvel tomboy”, and Waititi has now said that he would love the chance to bring that side of her character into the new film.
“The IP (intellectual property) is not mine,” Waititi told Variety. “But with the actors, I feel whatever makes them comfortable – whether they feel like there’s a natural choice, or a natural way for that character to go – then I’m pretty supportive. If Tessa wanted to do that, I’m in.”