Chris Hemsworth Thought 12 Strong Would Be A Nice Break From Marvel-Sized Action, Was Totally Wrong

Chris Hemsworth 12 Strong

Chris Hemsworth has spent most of the last two years playing and talking about Thor. Production on Thor: Ragnarok took place in the late summer of 2016, and he not only had to do press for the film a year later, but also spent all of 2017 making reprising his part as the God Of Thunder in The Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers 4. That's a lot of time playing one role, which is ultimately what drew him to 12 Strong -- a war film he made in the middle of everything to give himself a break. As he recently explained to me, however, the project didn't exactly wind up being the breezy break from blockbuster action that he felt he needed. Said Hemsworth,

I was shooting Ragnarok in Australia, and I had a bit of a concern about going from Ragnarok to Avengers 3 to Avengers 4, and just having Marvel movies come out over the course of the next four years or something. I thought, 'I gotta insert something grounded and contemporary in there somewhere.' And this opportunity came up, and it fit the bill, and I said, 'Great! Let's do it.' And then when I was in the middle of it, I was like, 'Oh my god.' And then I'm getting Avengers scripts sent to me while I'm shooting this movie, and I'm like, 'Oh shit, what have I done?!'

I had the pleasure of sitting down one-on-one with Chris Hemsworth earlier this month during the Los Angeles press day for the new film, and it was at the very start of our conversation that I brought up the incredibly busy schedule that he has been on going back to mid-2016. Telling the story of how it was that he came to 12 Strong, he explained that the project was meant to give him a chance to breathe a bit before his crazy 2017, but that didn't exactly work out as planned. The production ultimately lasted about two-and-a-half months (from the end of December 2016 to mid-February 2017), and the crazy amount of action involved had him thinking that he possibly bit off a bit more than he could chew.

Spelling out the run of projects, Chris Hemsworth laughed, noting that he wasn't the only one who found themselves confused when considering the crazy amount of work that he had decided to take on:

So, basically, from Thor 3 through this to Avengers 3, Avengers 4, press tours, the whole thing, it feels like I've been running for two years. And my wife is like, 'Why did we insert another movie in among!?'

In 12 Strong, from director Nicolai Fuglsig, Chris Hemsworth stars as Special Forces Captain Mitch Nelson, the leader of the group of soldiers who first struck back at the Taliban following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. As noted, it was a gig that required a whole ton of action -- including running, dodging gunfire, fighting, and horseback riding -- and Hemsworth came out the other side of it feeling more than a little tired. However, the actor also told me that it was ultimately a decision that he was proud that he made thanks to the content and quality of the movie. Said Hemsworth,

It wasn't like a little independent drama, which I had thought I was looking for, you know? I'm incredibly thankful for it, because I love the film, and I'm proud of it. But I'd be lying if I said I wasn't spent at this point, and ready for a break. And I will have one in a couple weeks!

12 Strong, which stars Chris Hemsworth, Trevante Rhodes, Michael Shannon, Michael Pena, Navid Negahban, William Fichtner, Rob Riggle, and more, arrives in theaters this Friday, January 19th. To see what else is set to come out in the rest of the year, check out our 2018 Movie Release Schedule.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

NJ native who calls LA home and lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran who is endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.