“This film is- how can I put it? It’s one of the craziest things, if not the craziest thing, [director Taika Waititi] has ever made. I think it’s the most insane thing I’ve been a part of,” Hemsworth told ET’s Cassie DiLaura during a recent interview. “It’s wacky, it’s wild, it’s fun, just like ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ was, but we now have a beautiful love story at the center of it.”
That’s right. In addition to some “new armor and new outfits,” “Love and Thunder” also reunites Hemsworth’s titular God of Thunder with his Earth-bound love interest, Jane Foster, played by Natalie Portman. However, as trailers have shown, Jane doesn’t seem to be the same person as when MCU fans last saw her in 2013’s “Thor: The Dark World”.
Preview clips have seen Jane donning Thor armor, complete with blonde hair, and wielding Mjölnir, sparking plenty of speculation about her character’s fate and the comic-canon “Mighty Thor” storyline – which sees Jane taking on the mantle while undergoing cancer treatment – as well as buzz about how ripped Portman got for her MCU return.
“She worked hard,” Hemsworth noted. “I mean, she’s always had a great sort of physicality and has trained a lot through her career and through her life… but she lifted a lot more weights on this one to sort of sculpt her muscles and so on.”
The pair were also joined during their on-set workouts by Tessa Thompson, who returns to the “Thor” franchise as Valkyrie. And while it seems like the new King of Asgard has found the more boring side of bureaucracy in “Love and Thunder”, Hemsworth said the actress didn’t hold back when it came to the gym.
“We had a big ice bath there, which we’d rotate through, and that became… the real test of strength,” he recalled. “I’d done it a bit, but I sort of was keeping my time in there to a minute or two, and [Tessa] came in the first day and did three and a half minutes. So then we all had to try and do three minutes.”
In addition to Hemsworth’s powerful female co-stars, “Love and Thunder” also introduces some incredible MCU newcomers: Christian Bale as legendary Marvel supervillain Gorr the God Butcher, Russell Crowe as Greek god Zeus, and Melissa McCarthy in a hilarious cameo with the Asgardian acting troupe from “Ragnarok”.
“I think the biggest challenge for Taika was kind of sifting through the breaks and the comedic improvisations that went south and piecing it together,” Hemsworth said of working with the impressive cast. “It just gives the whole set a different energy. Everything that you see on screen is a byproduct of that environment. Taika does that – he orchestrates a wacky set and then gives you a wacky film.”
In the complicated timeline of the MCU, Hemsworth’s Thor is one of three of the original Avengers still standing – and the actor took a moment to marvel at how much his life has changed since his Marvel introduction in 2011.
“It’s obviously shaped my career,” he reflected. “It’s been really interesting looking back recently and thinking about my time playing this character and how the character evolved and also I was evolving and learning and maturing.”
So, is he thinking about hanging up Mjölnir after “Love and Thunder”?
“I don’t know,” the actor admitted. “Each time I’ve done it, I sort of thought, ‘OK, I don’t know what else I could say as this character, and thanks for having me,’ and then something else just comes up – a new script or a new director, and has given me a different idea and perspective on it.”
“I’m open to anything, you know?” he added. “I’m so thankful to have done so many, and so proud of this film, and if I’m lucky enough to do more, then great. If not, it’s fantastic. I’m thankful either way.”
For now, the actor’s immediate plans are to spend a bit more time at home, with wife Elsa Patacky and their 10-year-old daughter, India, and eight-year-old twin sons Sasha and Tristan.
“I just wanna be home now with the kids,” he shared. “Just hang out and do the usual drop off, pick up, weekends and sports and all that sort of fun stuff that the kids are involved in at the moment.”
“Thor: Love and Thunder” storms into theaters on July 8.
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