For a media empire famous for gorging its audiences on content, Marvel has been suspiciously quiet about Thor: Love and Thunder. And that means it’s mandated its actors do the same.
While it’s expected that a lot more will be shared after Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is released, for now, fans will have to pick through interviews from the cast to find out more about the movie. Here is everything the cast of Thor: Love and Thunder have had to say about the film thus far.
The first big announcement about Thor: Love and Thunder came at 2019 Comic Con when Taika Waititi explained his inspiration for the film: “When we were shooting Ragnarok, I was reading one storyline by Jason Aaron called The Mighty Thor, and for those of you who know that storyline, it’s incredible. It’s full of emotion, and love, and thunder, and it introduced, for the first time, female Thor.”
There’s a lot about the MCU’s Mighty Thor that fans can guess based on the comics, and the cast has dropped a few hints about what parts of that comic have been adapted. Natalie Portman has revealed to Yahoo! that, like in the comic, “She’s going through cancer treatment and is a superhero on the side.”
Natalie Portman has discussed how much time and energy went into her training multiple times. In a 2021 interview with Vanity Fair, she said: “It was really fun. I worked with a trainer, Naomi Pendergast, for, I think it was, four months before shooting, and then obviously all the way through filming. We did a lot of weight training and a lot of protein shakes … It was very physical, so it was a lot of both agility work and also strength work.”
She feels that the physical transformation was critical to her playing the Mighty Thor, adding, “It definitely helps you get into character, and it’s definitely changed the way I move. You walk differently; you feel different. I mean, it’s so wild to feel strong for the first time in my life.”
One thing that has been made very clear in the last few years is that this is not the standard Marvel project. To quote Nebula actress Karen Gillan, “Taika really brought out the bonkers side.” Waititi agrees with that depiction, telling ET in 2019, “We’re trying to double down on everything we did with [Thor: Ragnarok] and create something that is even more crazy and even more of a big adventure.”
In 2019, he doubled down on those claims, describing the movie as “the craziest film I’ve ever done.” Continuing with the comparisons to Thor: Ragnarok, he told Empire, “It’s crazier. I’ll tell you what’s different. There’ll be far more emotion in this film. And a lot more love. And a lot more thunder. And a lot more Thor, if you’ve seen the photos.”
According to the cast, Thor: Love and Thunder is well on its way to being the MCU’s funniest installment. Valkyrie actress Tessa Thompson told ET, “It’s very funny. Very, very funny, and also very touching.”
Even more serious characters like Nebula have been woven into the comedic tone, with Karen Gillan telling Collider, “I don’t think she’s finding herself funny or being funny, but in her seriousness I think we will find her funny, and just the pure aggression that we’ve tapped into.”
The cast have known this movie was going to be amazing since they first read the script. According to Chris Hemsworth in an interview with The Philadelphia Enquirer, “It’s one of the best scripts I’ve read in years.” He added to those comments while talking to Elle Man, saying, “I can’t tell you anything about the plot, but I’ll say that I had a lot more fun reading the script than on Thor Ragnarok.”
Karen Gillan agrees, describing the script to Collider as “Taika at his best and his most Taika.” In keeping with the praise (and the secrecy), Tessa Thompson told ET, “I’ve read the script. I can’t tell you much. Lots of exciting text messages exchanged between Natalie and I. We’re going to have fun.”
Valkyrie steps into the spotlight in the newest Thor film, so fans might want to catch up on her most significant Marvel comic runs to be prepared. Tessa Thompson spoke with W Magazine about the character, providing fans with a few details on her abilities:
“She can sense when someone is close to death, and she takes them into Valhalla, which is essentially the afterlife. She can revive people. But when she revives people, sometimes she ends up in their body. And then she has superhuman strength and is essentially God.”
Furthermore, fans should expect Valkyrie to be playing a more central role in Asgardian politics. As Thompson explained to ET, “She’s king. If she can’t find her queen, she’ll just be king and queen at the same time.”
For the fans who loved seeing the Asgardian theatre troupe, there is almost definitely going to be more coming up. Matt Damon referred to their return to the MCU as a secret that everybody knows, explaining to ET, “[Luke Hemsworth and I] had a ball, and so Taika had us back again to kind of run that joke back and upgrade it a little bit.”
However, the particulars of the bit are hidden from even the actors, as Sam Neill told Australian radio station Nova, “I did my bit, I don’t know who is playing who exactly because they are sort of swapping roles.”
Many of the side characters from the Thor movies have dropped off over the years, so it was definitely in question whether Thor’s newest friends from Ragnarok would continue on in the MCU. But Taika Waititi has provided fans with enough information to know that Korg will be back, and in a fairly significant role.
Fans saw Korg’s newest look in the trailer, but according to Waititi’s interview with ET, “Thor and Korg are a bit of a duo in this film. So, my character is coming back and we will see both of them.”
Action, drama, and even heartbreak are all fundamental aspects of Marvel movies, but romance is not often included or done well. Taika Waititi spoke with Wired in November 2021 and explained his thought process on the newest Thor movie: “What I wanted to do from the beginning was to ask: ‘What are people expecting the least from this franchise?’ Oh, I know – a full-blown love story!”
His interest in romance is in part because the genre is so new to him, and Waititi is known for reinventing genres. He told BBC, “It is so insane and also it’s very romantic. I’m into romances now. I just want to make a romance. I want to make something that I’ve never done or never cared for.” Who all is going to be part of this epic romance is still in question, but fans are already eagerly guessing who exactly Valkyrie’s queen could turn out to be.
Tessa Thompson has been very open about her own sexuality, as well as the sexuality of her character, who is canonically bisexual. And according to her interview with The Wrap, that element will be explored in the upcoming film:
“We talk so much about representation and obviously, in terms of the LGBTQIA community, there’s still so much work to be done. But if you look at the comics in the canon, there are so many queer characters! It’s hard because Taika and I would’ve even liked to go further, but in the context of the movies, there’s only so much we can do.”
NEXT: 10 Best Thor Comics To Read Before Thor Love And Thunder