The Marvel Cinematic Universe's Phase Three came to an end this summer when Spider-Man: Far From Home arrived in theaters, revealing how Earth had recovered since the wild events of the last two Avengers movies. The studio has since been slowly revealing its plan for Phase Four, making massive announcements at both San Diego Comic-Con and this year's D23. One of these announcements was Taika Waititi's Thor: Love and Thunder, and the director recently clarified that both Thors will be present in the upcoming sequel.
Thor: Love and Thunder will break new ground for the franchise, as well as the MCU as a whole. The blockbuster will mark the first time a hero was given a fourth solo movie, and will also bring Natalie Portman's Jane Foster back to the MCU as Mighty Thor. Fans are eager to see Jane get the power of the God of Thunder, but they were left wondering: will Chris Hemsworth's character still be Thor as we know him? Taika Waititi recently offered up an explanation, saying:
You and me both, Waititi. Because not only will Jane Foster become Thor, but she'll be able to team-up with the OG Avenger when Thor: Love and Thunder arrives in theaters in 2021. Cue "Immigrant Song".
Taika Waititi's comments to ET are sure to excite Thor fans out there, who are eager for more information regarding Jane Foster's new role as Mighty Thor. The logistics of how Jane will become a God of Thunder and how that might affect Thor Odinson remain unclear, but the acclaimed director has clarified at least one aspect of that upcoming transformation. Namely, that both characters will have the same powers in Thor: Love and Thunder.
In addition to confirming the existence of both Thors in Love and Thunder, Taika Waititi mentions the comic Mighty Thor, which ran from 2015-2018. Clearly he's getting inspiration from the page for his sophomore Thor movie, which might allow the hardcore fans out there to get a few hints about what the fourth Thor movie might entail, and how the powers of Thor could affect the astrophysicist.
In the comics, Jane becomes Mighty Thor after Nick Fury reveals a secret about Thor Odinson, therefore making him unworthy of wielding Mjolnir. But Jane is able to lift it, and is transformed to Mighty Thor in the process. There is a twist, as she's in the middle of a cancer battle, and the transformation actually purges all toxins from her body, including the chemotherapy she needs.
Becoming Mighty Thor comes with a price in this comic book plot, in stark juxtaposition to the ego we've seen from Chris Hemsworth's character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It's unclear if Taika Waititi is going that route with Love and Thunder, but his inspiration from the comics seems to hint at this possibility.
If Taika Waititi wanted to strike down Jane's health, there seems to be the perfect macguffin in the form of the Reality Stone/ The Aether. Natalie Portman's character accidentally came into contact with The Aether during Thor: Dark World, and she became very ill as a result, with Thor bringing her home to Asgard as a result. While she was eventually freed of the Stone's presence (twice, counting Avengers: Endgame's Time Heist), it's more than possible that the Aether might have had a lingering affect on her body. Perhaps enough to serve as a catalyst for her cancer diagnosis.
Of course, this is all speculation at this point. Thor: Love and Thunder is still years away at this point, so the story might not even be nailed down yet. But Marvel fans (myself included) are thrilled about the upcoming movie, so fan theories will likely continue until Taika Waititi and Marvel Studios reveal more about the upcoming movies's plot.
Jane has had an interesting tenure in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and one of the first characters that audiences got to know intimately throughout the course of Phase One. She made her debut in the original Thor movie, serving as a love interest for the title character during his fish out of water story on Earth. She eventually fell for the God of Thunder and is an ally during his battle with The Destroyer. She kisses him goodbye before he returns to Asgard, and is shown with her team searching for a way to open a portal to Asgard during the film's end.
While she was referenced in The Avengers and Age of Ultron, she never physically crossed over into any of the other franchises within the MCU. But Natalie Portman did reprise her role for Thor: The Dark World, which allowed the character to become more involved in the main plot, and travel to Thor's (ill-fated) homeland. Jane comes directly into contact with an Infinity Stone in the process, a plot point which would become important in Avengers: Endgame.
Sometime after the events of Thor: The Dark World and Ragnarok, the Marvel couple broke things off. The reason hasn't really been explored, but it's been heavily hinted that she was the one who broke up with the God of Thunder. Avengers: Endgame showed how he was still torn up about it, viewing it was one of the many failures of his life.
While Natalie Portman didn't film any new footage, she had a very brief cameo in Avengers: Endgame. The Avengers' mission to travel through the MCU timeline and steal the Infinity Stones directly connected with Jane Foster, and her time connected with The Aether in The Dark World. Unused footage from the sequel and a brief line of dialogue were used to bring the charter back, but fans are eager to see her get a more meaty role in Love and Thunder, after her years of absence.
Thor: Love and Thunder is currently set to arrive in theaters on November 5th, 2021. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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