Chris Hemsworth will probably always be defined by his stint as the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Thor, which is hardly a bad thing when it’s turned him from a complete unknown into a major star. The actor was first announced as the Odinson way back in June 2009, and he’s currently hard at work on his fourth solo movie and ninth appearance overall in Taika Waititi’s Love and Thunder.
Unfortunately, however, Hemsworth has so far struggled to cement himself as a draw outside of his comic book comfort zone. Blackhat, Huntsman: Winter’s War, In the Heart of the Sea and Men in Black: International all bombed at the box office with him given top billing, but the massive success of Netflix’s bruising actioner Extraction has shown that audiences are more than willing to see him kick some ass outside of the MCU.
That doesn’t mean he needs to be typecast as an action hero, though, and the 37 year-old gave arguably the best performance of his entire career in Ron Howard’s racing drama Rush. The handsome Aussie was ideally cast as charming English playboy James Hunt in the biographical sports film that told the fascinating story behind the rivalry between the Formula 1 driver and his great rival Niki Lauda, played by Daniel Brühl.
It wasn’t a massive commercial success after earning just under $100 million on a $38 million budget, but it was easily Howard’s best effort from behind the camera in a long time, and scored widespread critical acclaim along with a Golden Globe nomination for Best Picture – Drama, while Brühl made the shortlist for Best Supporting Actor. Rush is coming to the Netflix library next month on April 16th, and should be appointment viewing for both fans of the sports movie and Chris Hemsworth himself.