There are many reasons to be intrigued with Thor: Ragnarok. For starters, Marvel has brought in Taika Waititi to direct after his previous and hilarious efforts were critically praised. His addition has already been felt thanks to a number of colorful photos coming out recently. However, the cast is another strong one for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Not only are a number of familiar faces returning, but Cate Blanchett (Hela), Jeff Goldblum (Grandmaster), Karl Urban (Skurge), and Tessa Thompson (Valkyrie) have joined the adventure.
Thompson is one Hollywood’s rising actresses after her breakout role in Creed, which has led to many anxiously awaiting for her to bring Valkyrie to life. For those that are familiar with the character in the comics, she is incredibly powerful and should add a new, strong female hero to the world. This and the change for more diversity is why Thompson is so excited about this role.
EW spoke to Thompson about her role as Valkyrie in Ragnarok and asked her many questions about her look, origins, powers, and future. The actress went on to reveal a few smaller details like her having a “business relationship” with Grandmaster and that Sarah Conner’s shape in Terminator 2 was her fitness goal, but she was also asked about her look and weaponry.
That was sort of a Taika remix. Marvel was really great, like “Do what you will with these characters.” In Ragnarok, you’ll see a Banner like you’ve never seen before. You’ll see Thor with the short hair, which happens when he becomes this gladiator for the Grandmaster. But you really do get to see these established characters in a new way. Obviously if they were really dedicated to the source material they would not have cast me.
As far as the armor, she’s such a bad ass that she doesn’t need a lot of metal to protect her. I’m essentially in leather. I have some really cool, like, chain mail like basically with my arms I can sort of shield and use them as weapons as well. I wield two daggers, which are sort of attached to me. And I also have a very special sword.
The special sword Thompson is hinting at is most likely her famed sword Dragonfang, which can absorb any force and is indestructible. But while that may be staying the same from the comics, those familiar with the character are well aware that Thompson does not look like the comic version. This move was made in an effort to further diversify the MCU and is something Thompson praises Marvel for doing.
Yeah, it’s really great. We have so many conversations particularly now about representation in film. I think the unfortunate thing about a lot of these fantasy movies is when they’re based on source material a lot of these comics were written in a time when that wasn’t a part of the conversation as far as having representation. Not just having characters that reflect the world we live in but how we represent the characters. If we were also dedicated to the source material, Valkyrie would potentially be a female Thor but she’s fighting in basically a bathing suit, which is also absurd. So we had a conversation of, what is a strong look? Like, she should probably be in pants. That probably makes more sense for the kind of work she’s doing. And we had conversations about her sort of feeling like a tomboy and having a certain masculinity about her while still being very much a woman.
It’s such an exciting time to be part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, like you look at a cast like Black Panther. I think it’s really important for little boys and little girls to go to these movies and see themselves reflected on screen. I’m really excited about this generation of young women that can look at a screen and see some brown people in space. I’m happy to join Idris Elba so he doesn’t have to be the only one. He’s lonely!
Even though Valkyrie has yet to make her big screen debut, fans of the character and Thompson are already hoping that she will have a long run in the MCU. So could this include an appearance in Avengers: Infinity War with every other Marvel character? It is possible.
You never know where people will pop up. In the next phase, the hope is to find ways to interweave all these characters, and certainly with Infinity War, those are the culmination of a lot of work since Iron Man. She’s part of the tapestry now. For me, it’s exciting to join at a time with young actors like Brie Larson and Chadwick Boseman and Michael B. Jordan. We’re all hopefully going to meet in one of these movies.
It is clear that Thompson is already having quite a bit of fun with the character and loves being involved in this universe. With Infinity War set to travel to many locations and the heroes needing all the help they can get, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Valkyrie make her return then. We will have to wait and see if that will be the case or not, and her reception in Ragnarok could go a long way in making it happen.
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