Yesterday, IGN spoke to Thor director Kenneth Branagh at the LA premiere for his television movie series, Wallander. In the interview, they briefly discussed the schedule for Thor as well as the confirmation of one of the candidates in the running to play the lead.

Since Branagh’s Wallander will be having a second series, IGN asked the Shakespearean writer/actor/director how that will affect production on Thor. Branagh responded revealing that principal photography for the Marvel flick will begin in January.

“Well, I’m working currently on Thor for Marvel and we’re planning that one. We’re having a great time at the moment. We’re in intense pre-production… I shoot Thor in January of next year and because the time of release has been moved, it’s allowed me to have a moment in the summer where I can shoot the Wallanders.”

Later in the interview, Branagh confirmed that his co-star from Wallander, Tom Hiddleston, is in fact, in the running to play Thor at the moment with so many names in the hat. This was rumored not long ago with Hiddleston listed amongst other Thor candidates such as Josh Hartnett, Liam Hemsworth, Joel Kinnaman, Charlie Hunnam and Alexander Skarsgård.

It seems completely up in the air as to who’s the lead choice to play the God of Thunder. For a short while it seemed that Alexander Skarsgård was likely to be chosen but last week Screen Rant reported that young Skarsgård wasn’t too sure that he was still in the running since he hadn’t been contacted in a while. Shortly thereafter, Charlie Hunnam revealed that he had recently screen-tested for the role but was also unsure as to where Branagh and co. were in terms of casting. Now with Branagh confirming Hiddleston’s chances, who knows who they are leaning towards.

Since we’re on the topic (again) of who may play the Asgardian hammer-wielding hero, I’d like to briefly discuss another potential candidate who we’ve not covered before on Screen Rant but have been hearing about for quite some time.

If you want Thor to be played by a hulking physique of a man, who’s tall, thick and ripped – A man experienced in fighting who sports long blonde hair – A warrior-turned-actor who’s quickly gaining experience and will no doubt have some big roles in the future – Then James Preston Rogers may be your Thor.

thor james preston rogers to play thor Updates On ‘Thor’ Schedule & Candidates

James Preston Rogers’ sporting warrior tattoos

Many of you who have been following rumors about the Thor movie have probably come across the name of James Preston Rogers, an ex-wrestler who left the WWE to pursue his true passion of acting. He’s been popping up on fansites and earning a bit of an online following with his desires to play Thor. There’s an online petition, a facebook group and other sites out there supporting him as well as this MTV video audition made with him detailing why he should be cast:

From reading and watching interviews with the Canadian up-and-coming actor, he obviously wants the part and seems like a great down-to-earth guy who’s knowledgeable of the character. Despite some small roles in films such as Outlander (he does all of his own stunts… obviously), James Preston Rogers is relatively new to the acting business and is lesser known than the six candidates listed above. For the execs making the casting decision, that will be something that could hold him back.

James Preston Rogers wants to be Thor and wants your support!

For a good little interview with James Preston Rogers, check out Popdose.

With the delayed release date of the film, I’d expect to hear come casting updates late this summer as they prepare for the January production start.

What do you think of the Thor candidates and my added choice of James Preston Rogers?

The revised release date for Thor is June 17, 2011.

Sources: IGN

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