Thor: Ragnarok has been described both as a "buddy pic" and a "universal road movie" centered around Thor and Hulk. Where exactly the two buddies will be traveling on their road trip has mostly been unknown, but rumors have swirled that the movie would take some cues from the Planet Hulk comic book arc, which had Hulk landing on a distant planet and engaging in gladiator battles for survival.
Now some new evidence has emerged that there will indeed be a Planet Hulk influence on Thor 3, as an Instagram post from Marvel vice president Ryan Penagos shows Gladiator Hulk armor on full display at San Diego Comic-Con 2016. The armor is on display at Marvel's SDCC stage, so this is not just some extremely well done cosplay from a Hulk fan but the real thing.
The armor looks very similar to the armor used in Planet Hulk and the confirmation from Penagos that it is Gladiator Hulk armor is proof positive that the storyline will be part of the upcoming Thor movie. With it being part of Marvel's official SDCC presence, it seems the studio was ready to let the cat out of the bag on the comic book connection and get fans of the story arc excited for Thor 3. Check out the photo for yourself, below:
The Planet Hulk storyline took place in the Incredible Hulk comics starting in April of 2006 and ending in June of 2007. That is over a year's worth of comics devoted to the story, and the result was suitably epic. After the Illuminati (a secret group consisting of Marvel heavy-hitters such as Iron Man and Reed Richards) decide that Hulk has become a menace to Earth, they shoot him into space with the intention of him never coming back. After passing through a wormhole, Hulk lands on a distant planet where he is taken into slavery and forced to fight brutal gladiator battles.
Whether some or all of the storyline will make it into Thor 3 is still unknown, but it's likely that much of what was in the comics will be left out to make room for Thor's part of the story. After all, he is the title hero of the movie. If Thor were also to find himself forced to fight gladiator battles alongside or even against Hulk, that would certainly make for an action-packed movie. Either way, fans of Thor and Hulk have something to look forward to in late 2017.
Doctor Strange opens in U.S. theaters on November 4, 2016, followed by Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – May 5, 2017; Spider-Man: Homecoming – July 7, 2017; Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017; Black Panther – February 16, 2018; Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 – May 4, 2018; Ant-Man and the Wasp – July 6, 2018; Captain Marvel – March 8, 2019;Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 – May 3, 2019; and as-yet untitled Marvel movies on July 12, 2019, and on May 1, July 10, and November 6 in 2020.
Source: Ryan Penagos