Following in the footsteps of the mammoth box office performance of Iron Man 3 earlier this year, Marvel's second comic book offering, Thor: The Dark World, could well be in line to dominate among the fall 2013 releases. Chris Hemsworth returns as the titular Norse god of thunder, facing a brand new threat that will bring him back together not only with his human sweetheart Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), but also with his disgraced (but adopted) brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston)
The first clip shows Thor's close companions, Sif (Jaimie Alexander) and Volstagg (Ray Stevenson), keeping everything under control (sort of) in the midst of battle before Thor himself shows up just in time to deliver a one-liner. The enemies they're fighting don't look like Dark Elves and quite a few shots from this battle have been shown in the trailers, including one where Thor easily takes out the marauders' biggest warrior, so it's quite likely that this is an action setpiece from early on in the movie.
Another clip shows a more full version of Thor proposing a temporary truce to an imprisoned Loki, who has been locked up in yet another transparent cage and whose hair length acts as a handy guide to how much time has passed since The Avengers. The relationship between the two brothers is apparently going to be central to Thor: The Dark World, and since Loki won't be in The Avengers: Age of Ultron, this might be the last we see of Hiddleston in the role for at least a couple of years.
The most recent clip, courtesy of IGN, gives us a good look at Christopher Eccleston (Doctor Who) in makeup and prosthetics as Malekith, the leader of the Dark Elves. Malekith wakes up from what looks like a very long slumber and is immediately ready to start delivering speeches to his minions - now that's the sign of a real go-getter.
Thor: The Dark World looks like it could be at east on par with the first film, based on the clips and trailers so far, but some concern has been caused by talk of its slightly chaotic production. The script and story have been evolving throughout the shoot, with Joss Whedon called in to perform screenwriting CPR on certain scenes and Hiddleston called back for reshoots less than three months before release. Taylor also told us in an interview that he heard Thor: The Dark World was going get a 3D release after production had already begun and didn't particularly bother factoring this into the way it was shot.
The willingness to continually adjust and tweak Thor: The Dark World's script even after post-production had already begun could either work in the movie's favor and give it more polished feel, or - if Taylor failed to pull it all together in time - it may have just made the whole thing even messier than if it had been left alone. Luckily, we won't have to wait too much longer to find out which it is.
Thor: The Dark World will be released in 3D IMAX theaters worldwide from October 30th, 2013, and will be out on general release November 8th.