Chris Hemsworth 'Thor' Interview
About.com, May 2010 (watch the interview online here)
Chris Hemsworth was named one of Australians in Film's Breakthrough Award winners at the May 2010 ceremony in Hollywood. Hemsworth's career is skyrocketing, and with a starring role in 'Thor,' his popularity in the US is growing by leaps and bounds.
The costume looks amazing. How did it look when you first tried it on? What did you think?
Chris Hemsworth: "Oh, it was crazy. I remember the first camera test and putting it on and going, 'Oh my god,' and then everyone who came and looked at it was like, 'Wow, this is a monumental sort of moment.' And standing in it was a very odd experience, you know? But it was beautiful. I mean, Alex Byrne designed the costume and they spent I think almost two years kind of leading up and building that thing and setting it up. It really paid off. The thing is incredible. It's not very comfortable, but..."
How can you move in that?
Chris Hemsworth: "You can't, really. We broke a lot of them. It's pretty restrictive. But it it's such a picture. Anthony Hopkins said to me in the camera test, we were both looking at each other's costumes and he said, 'God, there's no acting required here, is there?' And I thought, 'Absolutely.'"
Being cast as Thor, that's a huge weight on your shoulders. There are so many people expecting a lot out of you. How do you handle that?
Chris Hemsworth: "You know, I just finished – I wrapped on last Thursday – and I've been involved in that for eight, nine months, actually longer since I found out about it and the lead up, and the whole time it felt like I was kind of treading water to keep my head above water and not think about it. And then now I'm sort of sinking under, going, 'Wow, what a crazy experience.' But there was such a support group in that film. A lot of the producers have written comic books, written Thor comics. You've got Kenneth Branagh who's just a genius. And then Anthony Hopkins, Natalie Portman, Stellan Skarsgard...it's just an exceptional cast."
I was talking to Ray Stevenson and the word he kept saying over and over again was 'epic'. Does that describe what it was like on the set?
Chris Hemsworth: "Yeah, incredibly epic. That's funny. I kept saying epic when I came onto the film and they were all giving me digs about it."
Is there any particular scene that you're really looking forward to fans being able to see?
Chris Hemsworth: "Oh god, I mean the whole thing. The action sequences in this, Andy Armstrong and Vic Armstrong – the geniuses who have been doing stunts in this business for 20 or 30 years – did the stunts on this, and I've never seen anything like what they set up and all the stunt guys what they put together, wire gags but then also real hand-to-hand sort of combat. I mean incredible sets. Bo Welch built these sets and we hardly used any green screen. There were these big recreations of Asgard, this sort of sci-fi, Viking mixture."
So when you walk on a set like that, you actually feel like you're in...
Chris Hemsworth: "Oh, absolutely. The combination of the costumes and the sets it was like literally the work was done for you in a lot of ways, you know? It was sort of about less, less."
And are you ready for The Avengers?
Chris Hemsworth: "Look, I just sat down with the Marvel guys and Joss Whedon recently and talked about it. It starts next January, I think, or February, around that time we start shooting. And I think it's going to be a hell of a ride. When you bring in Iron Man and Captain America and whoever else they wrangle from the Marvel universe, it's going to be a hell of a film."
Are you going to stay in shape in between the films?
Chris Hemsworth: "Yeah, yeah. I'm not going to eat too much pizza and let myself go too much. A couple of weeks and then I'll sweat it off and get back into it."
I have to ask this as being a non-Thor person, am I going to understand the movie?
Chris Hemsworth: "Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. I mean none of us were... You know, I didn't grow up reading comic books and neither did Kenneth Branagh. So what we worked on was, yeah, we pay all the respect due to where its origin is, but also create a film about real people, real characters, and relationships between fathers and sons – Odin and Loki and Thor and the turmoil that exists there and what have you. That was what it always came down to. It simplified it. Yes, we have this amazing backdrop and the world of comics, but it was about people."
My camera person would kill me if I didn't ask you – the hammer, what's it like?
Chris Hemsworth: "It's incredible. I tried to steal it but they wouldn't let me. It's a beautiful piece of design, equipment, whatever... What would you call it? Weapon. No, it's incredible. It looks just like what they have in the comics with the engravings from Asgard."