With Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase 2 behind us, all the eyes of fandom are looking ahead to Phase 3, which will kick off 2016 with “Captain America: Civil War” and “Doctor Strange.” But with the latter movie featuring no returning Avengers and the former leaving out the team’s heaviest hitters, many fans are looking ahead to “Thor: Ragnarok” in 2017.
Recently, while speaking to Empire magazine, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige teased some details about the third installment in the standalone “Thor” franchise, hinting that it will take both the audience and the character to a place we’ve never seen him before. With Earth protected by the cavalcade of science-based heroes like Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Captain America (Chris Evans) and, to a lesser extent, Daredevil (Charlie Cox), it looks like the god of thunder (Chris Hemsworth) will have to take on more otherworldly threats in “Ragnarok.”
“The film takes place within the cosmos primarily, which is to say, frankly, very little Earth,” Feige told the outlet (via ComicBookResources). “I don’t think people will read into that title alone [regarding] what the movie’s going to be. It’s going to be perhaps, as totally different from the two prior ‘Thor’ movies as ‘Winter Soldier’ was from the first ‘Captain America.’ We want to take it to new places. We’ve got new characters that will show how big we’re swinging on this. And we have a Hulk.”
As previously reported, Mark Ruffalo will be joining the cast in his, and the Hulk’s, first non-Avengers appearance in the MCU (assuming the standalone movie starring Edward Norton and his brief cameo in “Iron Man 3” don’t count).The actor recently told Ain’t It Cool News that the movie will tackle the issue of the Hulk and his alter-ego, Bruce Banner, and their merging consciousness. As a result, he hinted at a much more intelligent Hulk than fans have seen in the past.
While Thor and the Hulk teaming up to battle evil in the cosmos is exciting enough, ScreenRant previously noted that the movie may also introduce the Valkyries. According to the outlet, the characters have appeared many times throughout both Marvel comics and Norse mythology. They’re goddesses who choose the fallen warriors worthy of going to the afterlife world of Valhalla. There, they all wait and prepare for Ragnarok, the prophesied end of the universe. Given the title of the movie and the cast of players, it looks like this new intelligent Hulk will team up with his hammer-wielding buddy to stop a threat on a cosmic scale when the film hits theaters on July 28, 2017.