Following the smash-hit success of his movie Thor: Ragnarok, Taika Waititi is returning to the Marvel Cinematic Universe once again to write and direct the fourth instalment in the Thor series, Thor: Love and Thunder – part of the Phase 4 slate of upcoming Marvel movies.
The film will see Natalie Portman’s Jane Foster take on the role of Lady Thor and also the Guardians of the Galaxy. It’s fair to say that this particular Marvel sequel won’t be one to miss.
Check out everything we know about Thor 4 below.
When is Thor: Love and Thunder released in cinemas?
Thor 4 will be released on 11th February 2022, having been pushed back from its earlier planned release of 5th November 2021.
What is Thor 4 called?
Thor 4 will be called Thor: Love and Thunder. The announcement was made at San Diego Comic-Con in July 2019, along with some other massive bits of news. More on that later….
Who’s in the Thor: Love and Thunder cast?
Marvel boss Kevin Feige announced at Comic-Con that Natalie Portman will return to the MCU as Jane Foster. But this time around, she will reportedly become a female God of Thunder herself, when Thor is unable to lift his hammer due to apparent unworthiness (a theme previously explored in Avengers: Endgame and in a popular comic-book run that the film is directly inspired by).
“[She’s] a Thor,” Waititi told ET. “There’s still the other Thor, the original Thor. She’s not called Female Thor. In the comics, she’s called the Mighty Thor. It comes from that comic run.”
Explaining how he convinced Portman to return to the Thor series, Waititi explained (via Variety), “I just said to her ‘Are you interested in coming back to this thing, but doing something really different?’ No one wants to keep repeating themselves, and no one wants to play the same characters all the time.
— Variety (@Variety) August 24, 2019
“And I think for her, just coming back, reprising that character in a whole fresh new way was really what would interest anyone. Especially in most of these films, if you’re not a superhero… do you really wanna keep doing that? I mean, I wouldn’t. I’d want to come back and change things up.”
Batman star Christian Bale has been confirmed for the fourthquel, though it’s unclear what role he’ll be playing.
More recent rumours suggest that Bale could be set to take on the next major villain in the MCU, with a reported leak obtained by The Illuminerdi claiming that he is in talks to play an “intergalactic villain.”
Based on a set photo from Dinsey+’s Loki, fans have also suggested Bale could be playing Dario Agger, aka The Minotaur, who is the corrupt president of Roxxon Energy Corporation.
On top of this, it’s been confirmed that Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson will return as Thor and Valkyrie.
Vin Diesel, who voices walking and talking tree Groot on Guardians of the Galaxy, apparently let slip while promoting his movie Bloodshot that some of the guardians will be appearing in the Thor sequel.
“I am waiting and excited for my friend James Gunn to knock this next one out of the park,” Diesel said according to ComicBook. “He took The Suicide Squad so he’s about to embark on it. Thor will also, the director talked to me about Thor will incorporate some of the Guardians of the Galaxy. That’ll be very interesting, nobody knows, maybe I shouldn’t have said anything.”
Jeff Goldblum has also hinted at a potential comeback for the Grandmaster, telling Entertainment Weekly: “I can’t reveal any secrets, not that I know anything definitively, but there’s a whisper of a thought or notion that I might have some participation in it.”
Beyond that, it’s all speculation.
It’s possible that Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk could appear in the film following his starring role in Thor: Ragnarok (Ruffalo supposedly still has one film left on his Marvel contract), or some team members from the Guardians of the Galaxy, last seen giving Thor a ride into space.
Many of Thor’s other supporting characters, however – including his friends the Warriors Three, his father Odin (Anthony Hopkins), his mother Frigga (Rene Russo), Heimdall (Idris Elba) and others – have been killed in recent Marvel movies, making it less clear whether any of them would appear, unless through use of flashback or visions like the Thor movies have used in the past. And then there’s the question of Loki…
Behind the scenes, it has been reported by Variety that writer and director of Netflix’s Someone Great, Jennifer Kaytin Robinson, could be joining the project as a writer to help Waititi shape up the script.
Will Loki be in the Thor sequel?
Obviously, Tom Hiddleston’s Loki died during the events of Avengers: Infinity War – but an earlier, 2012-era version of the God of Mischief escaped during the time-travel shenanigans of Avengers: Endgame, and now the character is set to appear in his own streaming series for Disney+.
Presumably, this Loki will be the earlier version freed in Endgame – but could he also turn up in Thor 4? Frankly, we can’t imagine a Thor movie without Hiddleston in it, so we wouldn’t be surprised if Thor does end up tracking down this alternate version of his brother even if he is stuck in a different time period.
And we wouldn’t be surprised if the Loki series ended up teasing this possibility. After all, Stranger Things 3 already proved that streaming dramas are a good fit for post-credits scenes…
What’s the story of Thor 4?
The film will adapt a Lady Thor story arc from recent a recent Marvel Comics series called The Mighty Thor, by Jason Aaron.
“That story line is incredible is full emotion, love and thunder and introduces for the first time female Thor,” Waititi said at Comic-Con. “For us there’s only one person who could play that role… Natalie Portman.”
In the comics, the original Thor was deemed unworthy to wield his hammer, Mjolnir, paving the way for Jane Foster. However, there is no Mjolnir in the current MCU (it was destroyed in Thor: Ragnarok), so Jane may take on her new powers in another way…
(Mjolnir returned, time-displaced, in Avengers: Endgame, but Captain America later returned it to its rightful time and place.)
And now, with Vin Diesel suggesting the Guardians of the Galaxy will appear in the fourthquel, the plot is anyone’s guess.