Thor: Love and Thunder will star Christian Bale as Marvel villain Gorr – aka "Gorr the God-Butcher." When the first trailer for Thor 4 dropped, Marvel fans had a lot to say about the fact that Bale's Gorr didn't exactly look like his comic book counterpart. While there were just as many fans who felt okay not wasting a face like Christian Bale's on facial prosthetics and masks, it was curious that Marvel Studios went with such extensive changes to Gorr, given the track record of offering fans comic-accurate villains in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. So why the change?
ComicBook.com was at the press day for Thor: Love and Thunder, and we had to ask Christian Bale what it was like balancing what he knew to be the traditional look of Gorr with what he was comfortable with portraying. Not surprisingly, Bale was a bit hesitant about Gorr's penchant for black g-string undies.
"I was coming off of a film where it had been necessary to be sort of rather lacking in muscle," Bale explained. "And then I saw the images and thought, 'Well, that's not gonna be possible... and this g-string thing that's going on there.' He looked in the comic books like physically, you know, someone to reckon with though. And I said, 'Well, you know, that's just not gonna be possible in the state I'm in. And we literally have three days between me finishing one film and heading over to Australia for the quarantine and whatnot. I like to usually have much more time in between, but the pandemic meant that things got worked out that way.
In the comics, Gorr does, indeed, have a taut lean muscular physique – which he doesn't mind showing off by wearing nothing but a black g-string and black hooded cloak. Footage from Thor: Love and Thunder clearly shows that Bale will be a much leaner version of the character. Looking at Chris Hemsworth's Thor (and Love and Thunder is certainly showing off all of him) it's hard to reconcile the lack of physical symmetry in the two adversaries, who will be going at it pretty rough in the film. That's where the literal magic of the Marvel Cinematic Universe comes into play:
"So we said, 'All right, no, we'll go with the supernatural powers that he does have, that he gets from the Necro sword, et cetera,' which I think works really effectively," Bale continued. "And, you know, they might wanna see his ass; they don't wanna see mine. So let's say lose that g-string – and that decision had, thank God, already been made the very first time I sat down with Taika... He went, 'No, no, no, no, let's not go there.'"
Marvel fans have gotten used to plenty of changes the MCU has had to make over the years. With insiders already calling Christian Bale one of the most frightening MCU villains ever, the performance will very likely speak for itself, and create a whole new vision of what fans think of when they hear the name "Gorr."
Thor: Love and Thunder will be in theaters on July 8th.