2016's all-female Ghostbusters reboot may not have been a critical or box office smash hit as Sony would've wanted, but Marvel fans need to thank the Paul Feig project for Chris Hemsworth's new and more effective approach in playing Thor in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Hemsworth played Kevin Beckman in the movie - Abby, Erin, Holtzmann and Patty's gorgeous but pretty slow secretary.
It's no secret that prior to Thor: Ragnarok, the God of Thunder was arguably the least liked Avenger - at least when it came to MCU's founding triumvirate that also includes Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark/Iron Man and Chris Evans' Steve Rogers/Captain America. But thanks to the tone overhaul that spilled over to Avengers: Infinity War, Odinson has quickly become a lot of people's favorite Marvel hero.
Speaking with Esquire as part of the actor being an ambassador for Swiss-made watchmaker, TAG Heuer, Hemsworth talked about his experience working with Feig in the contemporary remake of Ghostbusters and how that allowed him to be comfortable in improvising - something that he wasn't necessarily a fan of before.
That was some of the most fun I’ve ever had on set, and probably my real jumping-in point to improvisation. Prior to that, I’d always wanted to be very confident in the fact that I knew exactly what was on the page, and I had my options worked out and I knew where the scene was going to go. Playing it safe, to a degree. And we just threw all that out the window in that film, and it really opened up a whole other side to my sort of process, I think.
It was way more freeing and a lot more creatively satisfying, and just more enjoyable, you know? Because there’s a spontaneity that’s created that you just can’t get in a scripted scenario. Now I kind of want to put myself in a position where I feel like I’m right on the edge of getting it wrong and kind of not really knowing what’s happening—losing control of it—and I think that’s, to me, the key ingredient. You want to keep people guessing. You want to keep yourself guessing. That’s what I find is interesting to watch.
Furthering, Hemsworth chalks it to that specific experience with Feig in the Ghostbusters revival and his stints on hosting SNL that he's able to bring this new charming and humorous version of Thor - the one fans have come to love in Ragnarok and Infinity War:
It does [happen on the Marvel sets.] From Thor 3, definitely, it became hugely improvised. And I’m so glad I’ve been able to work with Paul prior to that. And I’ve done Saturday Night Live a couple of times; I have a movie called Vacation. So by the time I got to Thor 3, I was incredibly enthusiastic to do it. Taika Waititi, the director, had the same opinion. And we carried that into Avengers.
Hemsworth's future as Thor past Avengers 4 is currently uncertain, but if anything, his recent resurgence might give Marvel Studios the motivation to keep him around to help usher the MCU to the mysterious Phase 4. While Kevin Feige warned of several deaths coming specifically with regard to the franchise's principal characters, it's highly unlikely that no surviving original Avengers will exist after the Phase 3 capper, one that would be the anchor of the MCU going forward. With Iron Man and Captain America seemingly having a complete arc after next year's ensemble movie, Odinson, on the other hand, still have a lot of story to tell, especially with the possibility of rebuilding a new Asgard on Earth.
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