Yesterday brought confirmation that Kat Dennings is returning as the Facebook-referencing Darcy in Marvel's Thor: The Dark World, and today brings news that Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje is joining the superhero festivities as both the Dark Elf warrior Algrim the Strong and the villain Kurse.
Algrim was introduced in Thor #347 as the most powerful of the Dark Elves of Svartalfheim. He suffers terrible injuries after Malekith the Accursed (Christopher Eccleston in Thor 2) double-crosses him during a battle with Thor - and re-emerges as Kurse, a powerful warrior with enchanted armor fused to his skin, who is even stronger than the God of Thunder. Kurse also blames Thor for his condition, as he suffers from amnesia brought on by his injuries.
Variety has the scoop on Agbaje (a.k.a. Triple A) signing up for the Thor sequel, but makes no mention of how Algrim/Kurse will fit into the narrative proceedings. One possibility is that the showdown between Algrim and Thor takes place in the fiery realm of Muspelheim, which is rumored to be among the cosmic realms that appear in Thor 2. Furthermore, it's conceivable that the film's climax could involve the fight between Kurse and Thor taking place on Earth (in keeping with the comics continuity).
Agbaje is a fan-favorite thanks to his work on TV series Oz and Lost, along with appearances in such films as The Mummy Returns, The Bourne Identity, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, and The Thing; he's also the villain in Sly Stallone's next movie, Bullet to the Head. Several of our readers have been pushing for him to be cast as King T'Chaka, the father of T'Challa (a.k.a. Black Panther), as he's a good fit for the BP universe, but is too old to portray the eponymous super-powered hero.
The situation is similar to the casting of fellow fan-fave Afro-Brit Idris Elba as the Asgardian gatekeeper Heimdall, when many fans would've preferred him as a more important player in the Marvel Movie Universe (MMU). Nonetheless, the pair of actors stand to get a decent amount of screen time in Thor 2 (not to mention, participate in an action sequence or two).
Most of the primary cast members of Thor are returning for the followup, including Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins, Tom Hiddleston, Stellan Skarsgård, Rene Russo, Jaimie Alexander, Ray Stevenson, Tadanobu Asano, and Chris Hemsworth as the God of Thunder. Zachary Levi is replacing Josh Dallas as Fandral, while Alice Krige is committed to a minor role speculated to be that of Alflyse, Queen of the Dark Elves of Svartalfheim.
Story-wise, Thor 2 picks up after Loki (Hiddleston) has been transported to Asgard, where he stands trial for his crimes against the people of Earth in The Avengers. Meanwhile, Malekith's schemes almost certainly involve retaking control of the Casket of Ancient Winters (ie. the Frost Giants' weapon from the first film), which remains heavily-guarded in Odin's (Hopkins) vault following Loki's attempt to destroy Jotunheim.
That chamber also houses the Infinity Gauntlet, a weapon sought by Thanos (introduced during The Avengers' mid-credits scene), whose quest to "court Death" should link Thor 2 with the events of Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy - before all players in "Phase 2" of the MMU come together for The Avengers 2.
Iron Man 3 releases May 3, 2013, Thor: The Dark World on November 8, 2013, Captain America: The Winter Soldier on April 4, 2014, Guardians of the Galaxy on August 1, 2014 and The Avengers 2 on May 1, 2015.