Deadline: New York is reporting that Marvel has announced that not only will they be going ahead with a sequel to this year’s Thor, but also that the film is scheduled to arrive in theaters on July 26, 2013. The good news is Chris Hemsworth is back as the title character. The bad news is that director Kenneth Branagh will only be back in a “producing capacity.”
Thor has done more than half its $437,003,116 take from overseas ticket sales (which account for $259,561,239 of that total). You can probably chalk this up to the popularity of the concept in Europe and its truly international cast, but part of the reason might be due to Irish-born Branagh’s popularity overseas as an actor and director (he’s recently appeared on British TV in Wallander)
This is the second Marvel franchise to change directorial hands as Jon Favreau stepped down from directing Iron Man 3, handing the reins to the relatively unproven Shane Black. Coincidentally, Iron Man 3 is set to be released in May 3,2013. Favreau apparently will return as Happy Hogan in the new film.
No replacement has been named and no candidates have been mentioned. If I was a betting man, however, I’d expect an announcement, oh, sometime between July 21st and July 24th, at a little get together they hold each year in San Diego called Comic-Con.