Kat Dennings will be reprising her supporting/comic relief role of Darcy from 2011′s Thor in the upcoming sequel Thor: The Dark World.
For a while, it looked doubtful that Dennings would return to the franchise given that the film’s currently in production status is presumably conflicting with production of her sitcom 2 Broke Girls, whose debut season was one of CBS’s few breakout hits last year. Deadline‘s report had no information as to how that conflict was being resolved but presumably the series is taking a short hiatus while she is in London shooting her scenes.
It is also being reported that Denning’s role is being expanded, possibly in response to her higher profile thanks to 2 Broke Girls. Given that we have been told that the script will be exploring more of the mystical realms that Thor’s home world of Asgard inhabits it should be interesting to see how Darcy and the other Earth-bound characters fit into the scheme of things.
Dennings return marks the last of the first film’s major cast to be confirmed as returning for the sequel.
Thor: The Dark World will star Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins,Tom Hiddleston, Christopher Eccleston, Idris Elba, Jaimie Alexander, Tadanobu Asano, Stellan Skarsgardand and Ray Stevenson and is set for a November 8, 2013 release.
I’ll have to admit that when Marvel Studios announced their innovative plan for their superhero franchises – introducing several heroes in their own films before teaming them up for one big extravaganza – I was worried that the film featuring Thor would be a weak link in that chain. Would the magical aspects of the hero and his stories mesh well with the pseudo-science at work in Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk? Well, thanks to an invocation of Clark’s Law (“All sufficiently advanced technology will appear to be magic.”), the interconnected superhero franchise neatly sidesteps the issue to deliver a film that while not great, is much better than the potential train wreck it could have been.
On the eve of his assuming the throne of the other-dimensional realm of Asgard, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) impulsively leads an attack against the frost giant kingdom, believing them responsible for an attempted break-in of Asgard’s armory. Angered at his impetuousness, Odin decrees that Thor is unworthy of the throne, strips him of his powers and exiles him to Earth where he meets astrophysicist Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), who doesn’t quite believe his extra-dimensional origins. It is soon revealed that the orchestrator of all these events is Thor’s half-brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) who has his own aspirations to the throne.
And while the story is suitably epic enough, by being split across two worlds the script is forced to give us two sets of characters. While either group would be enough to carry a film on their own, there is not enough room in the movie for all of them. As such, pretty much everyone in the film gets only a token bit of characterization. Fans of the comics may not like how Thor’s Asgardian comrades-in-arms, the Warriors Three, are not shown to be the fierce fighters we are told they are and are often reduced to delivering the comic relief moments that Kat Dennings’s lab-assistant character doesn’t. Most frustrating is that Portman, as nominal love interest Jane Foster, barely manages to make an impression with her character and you’re left wondering what Thor sees in her besides a pretty face.
Probably due to director Kenneth Brannagh’s experience in making Shakespearean drama accessible to modern film-going audiences, the portions of the film set in Asgard carry more heft than the light-weight Earth-bound sections. It is also where a majority of the plot mechanics happen while much of the story on Earth involves running around and the occasional fight.
Thor of course has the added task of lying some further ground work as part of the ramp-up to next summer’s The Avengers film. It manages to incorporate most of those elements fairly well, perhaps better than last summer’s Iron Man 2 did. Agent Coulson makes a snide remark about Tony Stark/Iron Man and Bruce Banner/The Hulk gets an oblique mention as well. There is one character cameo that does come off as a bit forced and feels more like fan service than anything else.
But despite these misgivings, the film stands pretty much on par with the rest of the Marvel Studios output. The performances of Hemsworth and Middleston carry much of the film. Hemsworth excludes a likeable enough charm that captures the role of the still-maturing thunder god, while Middleston’s Loki is probably the best villain we’ve seen so far in Marvel’s franchises. This is welcome news considering that he is already signed to reprise the role in next summer’s The Avengers.
On Friday, Marvel Studios honcho Kevin Feige held a webchat through the LA Times Hero Complex blog, in which he beat the promotional drum for next summer’s Thor (“Thor is our first step into [the cosmic Marvel Universe] and from there, anything’s possible”) and Captain America: The First Avenger (“an epic, period adventure”) releases as well as answered numerous questions about what Marvel has in store for their super-hero team-up film The Avengers in 2012 and beyond.
Feige reconfirmed some of the superhero films that will be making their way to cinemas in the next couple of years. In response to a FilmBuffRich (Now who could that be?) who asked, “After Avengers we know you’re looking at Iron Man 3, The Runaways and possibly Edgar Wright’s Ant-Man. Anything else you care to share?” Feige responded, “ Those 4 films are gonna take up the next three years of my life! But don’t worry, we’re always working on more.” As to what those more may be, Feige hinted that Marvel Comics characters the likes of Dr. Strange, Iron Fist, Black Panther, Luke Cage, Moonknight, Power Pack and the Punisher were in various stages of development over the course of the hour.
Since the chat jumped back and forth through a number of topics, we’ve organized all his responses below by category.
Natalie [Portman] was always our first and only choice for Jane.
Natalie and Chris [Hemsworth] have amazing chemistry in the film. After an early cut, [Marvel Comics writer Brian] Bendis told me it was the best romantic chemistry in a Marvel movie.
People looking for a reference to Don Blake in the Thor film will find one.
(On the abandonment of the Thor comic’s faux-Shakespearean dialect) – As much as I love Stan the Man’s Shakespearean dialect, we felt it would be over-bearing. However, our director Kenneth Branagh has a great ear for the English language and I think you’ll find that the Asgardian speak is appropriately regal.
You only see her briefly in the trailer, but Kat Dennings comes close to stealing the film.
Idris rules as Heimdale. Come to think of it HE may come close to stealing the movie!
Captain America: The First Avenger
(On star Chris Evans having previously played the Human Torch in Twentieth century Fox’s two Fantastic Four films being cast as Captain America) – We figured if Harrison Ford could be Indiana Jones and Han Solo, Chris Evans could play Torch and Cap.
Working on the Cap trailer now. You should be seeing one in the new year.
More Cap pics coming early next year.
(Will one of those pictures be Hugo Weaving in his Red Skull makeup?) – You’ll be seeing it soon enough. And believe me, he looks amazing.
While there’s no Invaders, there’s lots of Howling Commandos!
(Though it looks like the Howling Commandos will not be lead by Sgt. Nick Fury) – We’re keeping Nick Fury as portrayed by the great Sam Jackson just in the modern era for now.
[Captain America’s sidekick] Bucky plays an important part in the film. Sebastian Stan’s done a tremendous job playing him.
(Responding to a fan’s concern that Chris Evans as Captain America may not have the same screen presence as Iron man’s Robert Downey Jr or Thor’s Hemsworth) – Evans owns the screen as Cap and is going to hold his own and then some.
The best part about making an Iron Man movie is deciding which of his many armors to debut. Joss would kill me if I gave anything away, but I will say that the evolution you saw his armor take in IM2 will continue in The Avengers.
(On the possibility of any other heroes or cameos we don’t know about yet in the film) – Maybe…
On choosing Joss Whedon to direct – He doesn’t lose site of the characters no matter how big and crazy the spectacle gets.
Edgar [Wright, writer and director for the project] was here a few days ago. He’s already working on the next draft.
(We should see the movie) – sometime after The Avengers.
A very talented writer is currently working on a draft
(Will the script be based on Ed Brubaker and Matt Fraction’s work on the series?) – The movie is definitely inspired by that great run.
(On how far their films are planned out for) – We try to stay five years ahead of the game. But now that you bring it up, what would you like to see in 20 years?
Love Power Pack, Maybe someday!
I have not been shy about my love for Dr. Strange, Black Panther, and Luke Cage.
(Another question about a possible Black Panther film brought this response) – Things are in the works.
Punisher’s back in house, and various plans are in the works.
(On the possibility of an R-Rated superhero film from Marvel) – We’re definitely open to it. Blade was a great franchise for us
I love female heroes too and would love to bring many more to the big screen in the future.
Moonknight’s a challenging, but extremely interesting character. We’ve been discussing various versions of it for years.
Love Marvel Zombies, but don’t think a Zombie TV show would ever work… haha.
(On Easter Eggs in upcoming films) – The Thor and Cap movies are really about our distinct origin stories for two of our most famous characters. As long as people are excited to find hidden secrets, we’ll continue to hide them.
(Will Thor, Captain America and/or The Avengers have button scenes after the credits?) – Some of them will…
The Incredible Hulk is MCU canon.
Our primary job is doing justice to the title characters, but we do have someone who’s got a large chart that spans across his office wall tracking the continuity. It’s pretty cool. Maybe we’ll publish it one day.
Update:The Hollywood Reporter has just confirmed Dennings’ involvement in Thor. Although there has been no official confirmationas to what character Dennings will be playing, the Reporter‘s sources state that the character is a work associate of Natalie Portman’s Jane Foster character.
Well, we thought we knew who all was in the cast of the upcoming comic book adaptation Thor, but it looks like there is one more mystery role that has just been filled. Natalie Portman, who has already been cast as Jane Foster, the love interest of Thor’s Earth-bound alter-ego Dr. Donald Blake, let slip to MTV Splash Page that one of the things she was looking forward to when production on the film starts early next year is that she’ll be working with her friend Kat Dennings.
Dennings joins Portman, Chris Hemsworth, Anthony Hopkins, Stellan Skarsgård and Tom Hiddleston in the adventures of the titular Norse god of thunder (Hemsworth)-turned-superhero. Kenneth Branagh is directing.
Since Portman neglected to state what role Dennings will be playing, but that hasn’t stopped the speculation as to who she may be playing. The odds on favorite character for Dennings to be playing is the Enchantress, an scheming Asgardian magic-user. One look at the picture of the character at right shows that Denning is pretty much a dye job away from looking the part. Leading creadance to the speculation is the fact that the Enchantress has frequently crossed paths with both Iron Man and the Avengers and the Thor film will ultimately crossover with the two Iron Man films and the upcoming Avengers.
Of course, others have put forth the possibility of Dennings playing Hela, the Asgardian goddess of death. Here, she wouldn’t need the dye job. A distant third option is that Dennings is playing a new character, created especially for the film. If you parse Portman’s statement, you’ll notice that she said she’ll be working with Dennings. Is it possible that Dennings’ character is an associate of Portman’s Jane Foster. I think it might be possible.
I have a feeling that now that the cat is out of the bag, an official announcement of Dennings’ involvement will be forthcoming, complete with her character.
1. Beverly Hills Chihuahua (3,215 Theaters, 91 Minutes, Rated PG): Hollywood is killing me. Do we really need 6 films released on the first week of October? I certainly don’t think so.
This film hearkens back to an era when having the words “a Disney film” attached to a movie wasn’t necessarily a good thing. Way before Pixar and before The Little Mermaid, in the late 70s to early 80s, Disney put out a bunch of lackluster movies that really only had a camp appeal if anything.
This film seems to be cut from the same cloth. It is about a pampered Beverly Hills Chihuahua who gets lost in Mexico and needs to rely on the local dogs to survive.
Maybe it’s just me, but I’m not looking forward to this film. I don’t know why. Maybe Paris Hilton ruined chihuahuas for me for ever. Or maybe it was the Taco Bell dog. Or maybe it is the fairly common plot. But if I was a kid, I would know enough to stay away.
2. Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist (2,421 Theaters, 90 Minutes, Rated PG-13): Michael Cera certainly is becoming the king of the teen movie romances, isn’t he? What with Superbad and Juno and then this film, he could be the new Tom Hanks for the younger generation.
I guess it is because of his charm. He has a more-laid-back-Woody Allen kinda of thing going for him.
In this film, he plays Nick to Kat Dennings Norah. They meet in a club and pretend to be dating to tick off both of their exes. This leads to an all night adventure through New York City as the pair falls in love for real as they search for a secret showcase for their favorite band.
The plot has a John Hughes/early Chris Columbus feel to it. So the kids will go see it because it speaks to their generation and the adults will go see it because it reminds them of movies they used to love.
3. How to Lose Friends & Alienate People (1,750 Theaters, 110 Minutes, Rated R): Nothing could send a person running more than having a film described as a “male The Devil Wears Prada,” like this one is. Nothing against the Meryl Streep/Anne Hathaway hit, but it just doesn’t seem to need to be given a male slant.
A mitigating factor to this is Simon Pegg. I think its safe to say that we’re fans of Mr. Pegg here at FilmBuff Online because is resume is filled with quality work. He can make something good great and something awful bearable.
Which one would we have here? It seems to be more slapsticky than Prada but that doesn’t mean that it is better. It is based on the story of a English man who worked at Vanity Fair magazine and never quite fit in. Doesn’t sound that special but we’ll have to see what Pegg brings to it.
Oh, and just a warning. This is the International Trailer, so be warned: There is a curse within the first 45 seconds. If you are easily offended, don’t watch it.
4. Blindness (1,690 Theaters, 120 Minutes, Rated R): A virus is released almost all the world’s population to go blind. Only one woman retains her sight and she must decide whether she should keep this fact a secret or use her sight to help people.
This is a high concept if there ever was one, and one that asks you not just to suspend disbelief but shatter it. But will it be a good movie? I don’t know.
This seems to be one of these films were bad thing keep happening to people. We keep seeing man’s in humanity to man and the shallowness of the human spirit.
It might be well executed, but that type of movie isn’t one I normally want to see. If I wanted to see bad things happen to good people, I read a newspaper. I really don’t want a movie to depress me unless it moves me as well. I don’t think this one would do that.
5. An American Carol (1,639 Theaters, 83 Minutes, Rated PG-13):You know what? It’s about time a movie like this hit theaters. Too long liberal Hollywood has let muckraking pseudo-journalists like that Commie Pinko Michael Moore run rampant. Now, finally, at long last, the political right has a movie that speaks for them! Because Rush Limbaugh just couldn’t do it by himself. Well, Limbaugh and Bill O’Reilly. And Ann Coulter. And Bernard Goldberg. And Sean Hanity. And, well, you get the point.
There’s a bit of a pity party going on here by the Right, saying that, with this movie, they are finally getting their say. But, in reality, you can’t swing a dead cat without hitting a right-wing pundit on TV, in books or in magazines. So that argument doesn’t hold water.
Don’t get me wrong, Michael Moore kind of deserves to be poked fun at. I agree with most of what he says and still there are time when he irks me. But this film seems like a ham-fisted attempt as parody that an actual good parody film. And that is something the right doesn’t need.
6. Flash of Genius (1,098 Theaters, 119 Minutes, Rated PG-13): You would think the story around intermittent windshield wipers wouldn’t be interesting enough to build a movie around, but you’d be wrong.
This film is based on the true story of the inventor of the above item who had his idea stolen by the automobile companies. His struggle to get the money and, more importantly, the credit he deserved makes up the meat of the film.
It is your classic David versus Goliath story. I mean, you probably have seen plots like this before. But if you are choosing a film this week about people struggling with adversity, this one might have a happier ending than Blindness.
1. The House Bunny (2,600+ Theaters, 97 Minutes, Rated PG-13): This film is the story of a former Playboy playmate who is kicked out of the mansion for being too old. She ends up being the house mother at a college sorority where she teaches the geeky, plain-looking girls how to glam it up a little bit and they teach her, well, how not to be so much of a bimbo, I guess.
Of course, I love how Hollywood presents these awkward girls. Almost all of them are brunettes or auburn-haired, none of them wear makeup, some wear glasses, all wear baggy clothes. Wait! Is this supposed to prove to me that these girls are unattractive? These girls, if I wasn’t already married, would be my type.
So, right there, the movie has lost me. I mean, Kat Dennings and Katherine McPhee really don’t need glamming up to be attractive (well, no woman does in my opinion) so I kind of think this film is pointless.
2. Death Race (2,400 Theaters, 89 Minutes, Rated R): Was it just me, or was the first thought that popped into your head when you saw this trailer, “Is Joan Allen slumming?”
Don’t get me wrong, the film seems like a fairly good sci-fi action flick, but Joan Allen has been nominated for an Oscar! Three Times! She should be making period pieces where dukes and duchesses stab each other in the back, not a film where inmates try to kill each other with cars.
Allen plays the evil warden in this in-name-only remake of the Roger Corman produced and Paul Bartel directed 1975 film, Death Race 2000. Jason Statham plays NASCAR driver Jensen Ames (love that name!) who was framed for killing his wife and is now forced to compete in the underground kill-or-be-killed car race.
3. The Longshots (2,000 Theaters, 94 Minutes, Rated PG): I would like us all to take a step back for a minute. Look at this film. Ice “F@!# the Police” Cube and Fred “It’s All About the Nookie” Durst have made a kids movie. Yes, one of the founding fathers of gangster rap and a man who has a sex-tape are doing family fare. If that doesn’t make you feel old, nothing will.
Durst is directing Cube in this film, based on the true story of Jasmine Plummer who, at 11, became the first girl to play Pop Warner Football in its 56-year history.
Ice Cube has dipped his toes into family fare with Are We There Yet?,but it is totally weird to see the lead singer of Limp Bizkit directing a major motion picture. I wonder if they are going to collaborate on the soundtrack?
No trailer to imbed, so if you want to see it, you’ll have to watch it on iFilm.