The Cast of Thor: The Dark World
By: Lynn Barker
The Thor saga continues with Thor: The Dark World in which superhero Thor (Chris Hemsworth) returns to do battle with Malekith (Christopher Eccleston), the vengeful leader of an ancient race that seeks to destroy the Nine Realms. This film is set after the events of Marvel's The Avengers. With even Odin (Anthony Hopkins) unable to protect Asgard from the approaching darkness, Thor, the god of thunder, reunites with his lady, scientist Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), takes her to his home world and must team with his greedy brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) as he prepares to make the ultimate sacrifice in order to save the world from certain destruction.
Check out what the cast had to say about family and character relationships in this funny interview.
Thor and Jane on his homeworld
Q: Okay, the brothers are more pitted against each other than ever. Sooo, who is Team Thor and who is Team Loki?
- Natalie: Oh, what kind of woman would I be if I didn’t say Team Thor?
- Chris: Uh, Team Loki.
- Tom: Team Thor! I’m losing but I’m destined to lose. That’s Loki’s fate I think. He’s always gonna lose.
Thor with father Odin (Anthony Hopkins)
Q: Chris and Tom, the subject of trust is prevalent within the film and, having worked together now on a number of films is there an actor’s trust there between you?
- Chris: Sure. There’s certainly a shorthand we have with this being the third film we’ve shot together now, and you spend a chunk of your shooting time getting to know one another. We’re able to pick up where we left off, and have developed a great friendship along the way. From the beginning, we were lucky. We just had a chemistry and the same kind of enthusiasm. We had the chance to ask the questions that Thor and Loki really haven’t had the focus to do yet. That was a great opportunity.
- Tom: I love you, man. It’s absolutely true. From, from the beginning of Kenneth Branagh’s Thor all the way through Joss Whedon’s The Avengers and into “Dark World,” it has been an amazing adventure for both of us. The two characters define each other, and need each other, and all acting is about what happens in the space between people. The more you trust each other, the deeper you can go. When I’m on set with Chris, whatever he serves I’ll return, and he’ll return back and that is the joy of it for me.
Thor in battle
Q: Chris, you have two brothers and a lot of this is about sibling rivalry so did you draw on any competition among the Hemsworth bros?
- Chris: Well, neither of them ever attempted to take over the universe just yet. But, I we’re competitive as siblings in kind of everything from sport and backyard cricket and football, surfing, to who’s controlling the remote control watching TV. But, in this film industry? Not so much. I think all three of us understand the sort of frailty and inconsistency of the work, and we help each other with auditions and always have. We’re not in direct competition anyway. It’s more of a kind of team effort with this than anything else.
Chris as Thor takes a break on set
Q: Did you use the relationships with your brothers for any of the scenes though?
- Chris: Yeah. In one of the scenes where they’re on the spaceship exiting Asgard, Tom and I were saying “No, this has gotta feel like when you’re in the back seat in the car with your siblings”. Yeah, we couldn’t be 100 meters down the road before the three of us’d be, like, “Get off me. Don’t touch me. You know, don’t do this.” I’ve certainly played that scene. You understand what it’s like to have that kind of love-hate sort of thing. You’d do anything for them, but at the same time, the simplest things can annoy you. I try and draw from whatever experiences I’ve been through and I can empathize with frustration towards one’s sibling.
- Tom: Well I, I have two sisters, and so it’s a slightly different, I suppose, different dynamic.
- Chris: They have long hair, though, like Thor (laughter).
- Tom: That’s it! Long blonde hair, both of them! The thing about siblings is they know you better than anyone. And there’s that-that thing of always being bound together by your histories. There’s something very honest about the interaction so that you can’t lie in front of your siblings. And I love in the film that Thor is able to demand from Loki that he play his hand. You know, Loki’s someone who’s constantly in control, but he’ll never show you how he really feels. And the only person who gets close to it is Thor, and that seems very true of sibling relationships. Also, I absolutely second the spaceship scene. I’ve actually been on a road trip with Chris and Liam so it’s very similar to that.
- Chris: You’re the worst backseat driver. “Go that way. It’s quicker”! No it’s not!
- Tom: Then you spend time with their older brother Luke and he just knocks both their heads together and says, “Shut up boys!”
Loki in battle
Q: Natalie, in the first film, Jane was very much a spectator, whereas this time she’s right in the middle of Thor’s world. Was that part of what excited you about the prospect of coming back? And for Chris and Tom, how nice was it for you to this time add a very beautiful third wheel to your dynamic?
- Natalie: That’s very nice, thank you. It was exciting to get to come back and, and work with everyone, and meet new people who were joining this time. Jane gets to go to Asgard this time, I was lucky enough to get to work more with Tom, and to have scenes with Rene (Russo) and Anthony (Hopkins), too. They were amazing and I got to just continue the fun rapport with Kat (Dennings) and Stella and Chris, and it was definitely a lot of laughing, maybe too much laughing on set.
- Chris: There’ll be interesting DVD extras/outtakes on this one. Yes, it was brilliant to have Natalie there and to break up some of the godly testosterone of Thor and Loki, uh, doin’ their thing with beautiful Jane. So, yeah.
- Tom: Yeah. I loved working with Natalie. In the first film, Loki’s aware of Jane Foster’s, presence, and refers to her. But, it was so fun to see what happens when the two share the same space. Violence, as you see. That’s the first move.
Natalie as Jane
Q: People really love Loki. What do you think it is about Loki that people seem to really love, maybe even over Thor?
- Chris: It’s the mixture of strength and villainous mischief and vulnerability. You can immediately kind of empathize with this misunderstood guy. My hat goes off to Tom and I think he’s done such an incredible job in every film, and hopefully we can keep sneaking him in more some way.
- Tom: I think Loki is defined by Thor. He’s defined in opposition to him. They are the sun and the moon. They are in opposition. I never expected the popularity of the character. It’s been such an amazing surprise. I found him a fascinating prospect, because he’s a mixture of playfulness and charm and mischief. He’s the god of mischief, so there’s a, a playfulness to him. But he’s such a broken character. He’s grief-stricken and bitter and jealous and angry and lonely and proud. And so the cocktail of all of his psychological damage is just an interesting thing to inhabit as an actor.
Tom as Loki
Q: Thor seems to grow as a person in this movie.
- Chris: Yeah, he’s less petulant and arrogant and teenager, as he was in the first film at times. There’s that transition into him understanding the darker side of the throne and that responsibility and the sacrifices, you know, it was fun to play with.
Thor with the famous hammer
Q: Isn’t there more humor and grounded reality in this film?
- Natalie: Yeah. I think it’s also that, even though the characters are traveling between realms, they are going through things that we can all relate to. You know, for myself, as Jane, (she liked a guy and) the guy didn’t call back and disappeared, and there’s a long distance thing going on, and then when it works out, she meets the parents, you know, those are all things that, obviously, most women can relate to. I’m the mortal among the-the gods and villains near me so I guess that’s naturally more grounded. But a lot of the issues they had us was dealing with were, were human. I mean, even the brothers, I feel like that’s so relatable.
- Tom: I suppose the thing that I always think is grounding about these films is the family relationships for me. We’re traveling through space and time, we’re dealing with gods and monsters but the heart of the film, from my perspective, is a family; a father, two sons, two brothers, a mother, and the interaction that they have.
Thor: The Dark World is in theaters November 8th!
Thor: The Dark World Poster