“I'm going to Sydney now for the very first of the openings in Australia. … I think Sydney is going to be invaded by all branches of the Hemsworth clan. [Chris Hemsworth] says anybody he ever knew has called and said they're coming.”
“At 47, I thought, what an amazing adventure it would be to attempt a big, popular entertainment piece. You have to go on such a steep learning curve because the technology is changing on an almost-daily basis. In terms of the visual possibilities, it's really only limited by your imagination. So all of that was exciting and I thought, I hope that maybe the central part of it, the relationships in this epic story, would be something I could bring something different to.”
“I was working with Marvel, who are self-confessed geeks or fanboys; they have an encyclopedic knowledge of this material. So they're the ones who have an ear closer to the ground than I do, to the detail of fans' reactions. If I were to listen to all of it, I'd have to make 1,000 different films for all the points of view. I don't see it as pressure. If lots of people turn out to be very interested in how this movie turns out, frankly, that's rare in my experience.”
“Although the logistics sometimes tempt you to carve it up a little, you end up wanting to have a very personal hand in it or it doesn't have what I think films like this really benefit from, which is a personal point of view … a real inflection of the story, which has to do with action as well as the acting.”
“When we see him [Chris Hemsworth] begin a fight in the first act, his eyes light up and you see this unthinking relish for violence that is Thor's strength and weakness. Without giving it away, there's a lovely moment in a pet shop which is just the mark of a true comedian. And there's a scene with Natalie Portman's character when he explains to her where he's from. It's stripped of the arrogance of the first moment; it doesn't have any of the conscious humor of the other moment, and it's so simple, naked, vulnerable, straight-through honest. With an actor of range, who also fulfills all the physical requirements of the piece, you get an extra dimension … a chance for an actor to take the character on a genuine journey.”
“In a strange way, I sometimes felt I was remaking ‘Henry V, with Prince Hal and his father, Henry IV, and a literal steal from Marvel, who made Falstaff from those earlier plays Volstagg in the Marvel universe. Shakespeare was already using the coming-of-age story, the prodigal son story, to allow an audience to identify with any young man's ritualistic conflict with parents or siblings as he tries to work out who he is. When it's a family with responsibility, in this case for the entire universe, the stakes are so high that, in a way, if it works, it can be very exciting and very cathartic. It's easy to get wrong, but it's thrilling if you think you have a chance of getting it right.”
Photo: Chris Hemsworth in Thor © Paramount Pictures
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.