Thor: Love and Thunder will see the return of many fan-favorite characters such as the God of Thunder himself, Valkyrie, Korg, and a newly powered Jane Foster. Fans may also be happy to hear that Asgard’s finest thespians are also set to make an appearance, having previously played on stage versions of the main characters Thor, Loki, and Odin in Thor: Ragnarok.
The trio provided one of the most comedic parts of the film, which was no small feat seen as Thor: Ragnarok is one of the most humorous Marvel films to date. Fans were surprised to see Hollywood heavyweights, Matt Damon and Sam Neill, playing Loki and Odin respectively, on an Asgardian stage, recreating Loki’s demise from the previous film, albeit a little edited by the God of Mischief. The play was essentially a vanity project created by the real Loki who was at the time disguised as Odin (yes it’s confusing). The addition of Chris Hemsworth’s brother, Luke Hemsworth, treading the boards as “Thor” was a nice little meta nod from director Taika Waititi.
The on-screen and real-life thespians will return for the upcoming Marvel release, as Neill spoke to the Hollywood Reporter about working with Waititi, with the actor affectionally stating “it’s always fun to see Taika.” With such a fun crowd of people, it’s not surprising that filming was a blast.
“It was a day out at the beach with all those Hemsworths and Matt Damon, of course. The first time we did this [in Thor: Ragnarok], Matt Damon was in the scene, dying or something, but we didn’t shoot with Matt Damon. So I don’t know how he turned up in that first film, but in [Thor: Love and Thunder], there he was, larger than life. So I was very pleased to meet him.”
When asked about whether or not Odin actor, Anthony Hopkins, gave him any feedback, Neill responded,
“Not at all, and to be absolutely honest with you, I wasn’t doing Hopkins at all. I just remembered one or two elderly thespians very early in my career. They were these broody old actors who would sound off in Shakespeare. My god, they were boring. So I was really just copying them, but I never thought I would go down the Hopkins route.”
Along with returning cast members, Christian Bale will play the film’s main antagonist, Gorr the God Butcher, a character out to seek the deaths of the gods he believes are so self-serving. In the role of one of those gods is Russell Crowe as Zeus, King of the Ancient Greek Gods. Tom Hiddleston will not be returning as Loki, having been killed off in this timeline and currently galavanting in his own show, returning for a second season.
Thor: Love and Thunder will be released in theatres on July 8.