Chris Hemsworth, who can be seen in the opening moments of J. J. Abrams’s Star Trek as James Kirk’s father George Kirk, has been cast as Thor in Branagh’s upcoming comic book adaptation. In addition, Hemsworth is signed for Marvel’s superhero franchise mashup The Avengers. It’s been a busy week for Hemsworth, who also landed the lead in the upcoming Red Dawn remake on Thursday.
According to Deadline Hollywood, Branagh and Marvel Studios honcho Kevin Feige arrived at their decision after Hemsworth delivered a screen test performance that was described as “oh my god”. Hemsworth had initially been rejected by the film’s casting director, but got a second look after his brother Liam, who was also auditioning, told producers that they should give his brother a second look.
The decision comes after an intensive casting process with Kevin McKidd (Rome), WWE champion Triple-H, Charlie Hunnam (F/X’s Sons Of Anarchy TV series), Tom Hiddleston (HBO’s The Gathering Storm), Alexandar Skarsgard (True Blood and Stellan’s son) and Joel Kinnaman all either having auditioned or been considered. Current James Bond Daniel Craig reportedly had been offered the role but turned it down.
Thor has a scheduled release date of June 17, 2011, with The Avengers due the summer after.