Sure, Thor should have aimed for the head instead of trying to make Thanos suffer, but the God of Thunder still managed to survive the end of Avengers: Infinity War. Will he be as lucky during the heroes’ next confrontation with Thanos in Avengers 4? Chris Hemsworth, the actor who plays Thor, has offered up some conflicting hints about the character’s future in the MCU.
Marvel fans expected that some heroes would die in Infinity War. However, it turned out that everybody pretty much everyone expected would meet their end made it out alive, while everybody else died. Curiously, the actors whose contracts expire after Avengers 4 all survived, while characters like Spider-Man and Black Panther, who have a definite future in the MCU, died. Fans who are trying to metagame the franchise now suspect that heroes like Captain America and Iron Man might die for real in Avengers 4, and that will be the end of their contracts. Hemsworth’s contract is up after Avengers 4 too, but he’s gone back and forth on whether or not he’s game to keep playing Thor afterward, as Bustle notes.
“Contractually, right now — yeah, this is it. I’m done,” he told USA Today in an interview published in January. “I won’t be playing the character again,” says Hemsworth.”
However, in another interview that very same month with IGN, Hemsworth seemed to say Thor: Ragnarok’s reinvention of the hero had him interested in continuing to play the hero:
I’ve just, literally two days ago, finished Avengers 4 and that’s my contract — my preexisting contract is done now, so it’s kind of like, ‘wow, that’s it … Two or three films ago I was like, “okay, a couple more.” I was enjoying it but I was like… I felt a little restricted. And after this last experience with Taika [Waititi], and actually these last two Avengers, I feel like we’ve reinvented the character a number of times — even in these next two, he evolves again, and you don’t get that opportunity often in a franchise. So I definitely feel a renewed sense of excitement and enthusiasm, and more so than ever, I think.
This could all be a moot point — all that the end of Hemsworth’s contract means is that Marvel can’t force him to be in another movie after Avengers 4. It doesn’t mean that the adventures of Thor Odinson will continue. Hemsworth could be super psyched to play Thor again and Marvel might say “no thanks, we’re killing you in Avengers 4, thank you for your time.”
The narrative of the MCU is always going to be spoiled by — or at the very least, influenced by — the narrative of the real world. It’s unclear what, exactly, Hemsworth wants to do with Thor going forward, and it’s unclear what Marvel would even want him to do. Perhaps the sanest thing to do is to just wait a year and see how the story plays out. Or, you know, we could keep ripping every interview and scattered IRL appearance apart looking for in-universe clues.