Marvel fans were elated to learn earlier this week that Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi would return to deliver audiences a new Thor film, with the Marvel Studios’ San Deigo Comic-Con panel adding even more excitement to the endeavor. Fans were given the film’s title, Thor: Love and Thunder, as Waititi, Chris Hemsworth, and Tessa Thompson took the stage. One of the biggest surprises came towards the end of the film’s discussion, as it was revealed that Natalie Portman would return to the series. Not only would she be returning, but she will be playing Jane Foster, adopting the mantle of Thor and the power of Mjolnir.
Portman debuted in the original Thor as Foster back in 2011, reprising her role in 2013’s Thor: The Dark World. The actress has largely been absent from the Marvel Cinematic Universe for the past six years, with this year’s Avengers: Endgame seeing her first return to the series since the Thor sequel. The film featured a flashback to the events of The Dark World and, while Portman’s Foster appeared on screen, the film didn’t ultimately utilize new footage of the actress.
Despite no new footage being utilized, Endgame directors Joe and Anthony Russo revealed that the actress did provide her voice to the scenes with new recordings.
Anthony confirmed with Entertainment Weekly of her involvement, “A little bit of voice-over when she’s talking at a distance, that’s it.”
The events of Endgame saw Thor leave New Asgard behind, leaving Thompson’s Valkyrie in charge of the kingdom. While it’s unclear exactly what events will unfold to lead towards Foster becoming Thor, it won’t be the first time fans have seen the character take on the role.
In the aftermath of Marvel’s Original Sin storyline, Foster was revealed to be battling cancer and was deemed worthy to wield Mjolnir when Thor was no longer able to. Foster embraced the duties, dubbing herself “Thor, the Goddess of Thunder.”
At the premiere of Endgame, Portman appeared and professed her pride over the role.
“It’s been so exciting to get to be part of this whole Marvel universe and get to see all of these incredible new characters be revealed to audiences every year and, of course, to have women in science be front and center is incredible, to spread that culture throughout the world,” Portman shared with Marvel about being part of the MCU’s foundation.
Prior to Endgame, Foster was referenced in Avengers: Age of Ultron, with Thor bragging about her many scientific accomplishments, while Thor: Ragnarok saw the character confirm that they had, in fact, broken up.
Thor: Love and Thunder releases in theaters on November 5, 2021.
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