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Thor: The Dark World (2013) Poster

Trivia

Jump to: Cameo (1)  | Spoilers (16)
The prologue was filmed in a blend of live-action and CGI, as the Asgardian/Dark Elf costumes were too constrictive in which to fight effectively and convincingly. There are only three characters played by human actors in the entire scene, Malekith, Kurse, and Bor. All other characters are CGI.
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Chris Hemsworth grew out his hair for over a year to have more authentic long hair, rather than use a wig, like he had to do in Thor (2011).
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(At around one hour and twenty-three minutes) Chris Hemsworth improvised hanging Mjölnir (his Hammer) on a coat hook in a polite manner, after playing with it between takes.
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This is the last movie written by Don Payne (who also wrote Thor (2011)). He died from bone cancer before this movie was released.
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(At around one hour and five minutes) Thor accidentally destroys a statue of his grandfather Bor, and Loki wisecracks that he killed him. In the Marvel comics, Thor ended up killing his grandfather as part of a deception by Loki.
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Loki (Tom Hiddleston) was originally not going to appear at all, and there was going to be a much greater focus on Malekith and the Dark Elves. Following his popularity in The Avengers (2012), the script was re-written to give him a big role.
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Because of the height difference between the two, a box, and later a ramp, had to be used in some of the close-up and kissing scenes between Natalie Portman and Chris Hemsworth.
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The filmmakers chose Iceland as the setting for the dark world of Svartalfheim for its black volcanic landscapes. The name "Svartalfheim" literally means "Home of the Black Elves" in Old Norse (Icelandic).
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Director Alan Taylor was so impressed by Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje's performance as Kurse, he made Adewale do all of his stunts, because the stuntmen did not move the same way as he did.
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(At around 26 minutes) The scene where Dr. Jane Foster slaps Thor had to be shot several times, because Natalie Portman kept "fake-slapping" Chris Hemsworth to avoid hurting him. After about thirty takes, she was slapping him for real. (At around 1 hour and 2 minutes) Later on, where Dr. Jane Foster first meets Loki and punches him, Portman actually did hit Tom Hiddleston. This time around, it only took her five takes to get to that point.
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A new language was created specifically for the Dark Elves. Christopher Eccleston (Malekith) and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Kurse) had to memorize some of their dialogue in this alien script.
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There were about thirty hammers made for Thor of various weights for different uses. The main hammer was made from aluminum, but it is replicated in different materials and weights, including a "soft" version for stunts. Of the thirty, five versions were used most often, including the "lit hammer" that emits light when lightning strikes.
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The Asgardian waterfalls were based on the Dettifoss waterfall in Iceland, Europe's most powerful waterfall. An aerial camera crew flew to Iceland to film the Dettifoss waterfall from every angle to use as a base for developing the visual.
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(At around eighteen minutes) The shot of the levitating truck was achieved with a large hydraulic rig, which could be programmed to change speed and movement.
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(At around seventeen minutes) It's evident that the English children have done more than tumble a cement truck, or make shoes and car keys vanish. When Jane (Natalie Portman), Darcy (Kat Dennings), and Ian (Jonathan Howard) first arrive, they pass through a "container-henge", stacked up by the youngsters using their gravitational anomaly, in the same way that Stonehenge was built during the previous Convergence.
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The mid-credits scene was directed by James Gunn, and ties into Guardians of the Galaxy (2014).
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Filming at the famous Stonehenge historical site proved to be a challenge. After finally getting permission from English Heritage, the filmmakers found out that there were lots of rules and regulations associated with filming there. They could only be in amongst the stones outside of the normal visiting hours. So shooting had to take place early in the morning before opening, which only gave the film crew about three hours before they had to pull back for wider shots, once the stones were opened to the public. Being a heritage site, no one was allowed to touch the stones, nor walk on any of them, so a lot of logistics had to be applied to the filming there.
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Josh Dallas was supposed to return as Fandral, but commitment with Once Upon a Time (2011) prevented him from returning. He was replaced with Zachary Levi, who was the original choice for the role.
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DirectorAlan Taylor wanted Asgard in this movie to have a more natural look: "The first Thor was quite shiny and it was a very conscious, smart choice. I wanted to get more of a sense of the Viking quality, the texture and weight of history. They've been around for thousands of years." To achieve this, the crew filmed on the coast of Norway (particularly the Lofoten islands) for three days, capturing six hours of footage. Asgardian structures were then embedded over this footage.
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This movie was shot under the title "Thursday Mourning." This was also the code name under which the movie was shipped to theaters. Thursday was named after the Anglo-Saxon name of Thor - Thunor (Thunor's Day - Thursday).
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A track in this movie is called "Lokasenna". This is a Norse poem that describes an exchange of insults between Loki and the other gods. Aptly, this track is used when Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and Odin (Sir Anthony Hopkins) meet at the beginning.
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Christopher Eccleston didn't like playing Malekith, a role he admittedly accepted mainly for the money. Ecclestone especially disliked the long hours he had to spend in make-up to complete Malekith's look. He claimed that the process took seven to eight hours on the first days, and about six and a half hours afterwards, but that Marvel had lied to him by not informing him about these extreme make-up requirements beforehand.
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At the end of September, Jaimie Alexander (Sif) was injured on the London movie set: "It was raining, it was dark outside, it was like five in the morning, and I went down a metal staircase and slipped and slipped a disc in my thoracic spine, and chipped eleven of my vertebrae. I knocked my left shoulder out of place, and tore my rhomboid on my right side. It took me out of filming for a month."
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(At around 52 minutes) The diagrams seen on Dr. Erik Selvig's (Stellan Skarsgård's) board contain homages to elements in Marvel Comics: The number "616" is a designation given to a specific Marvel universe (the original one that started in the 1960s, the Marvel Cinematic Universe is designated 199999). Simonson's Theory of Relativity is an homage to Thor comic writer Walter Simonson. The Nexus of All Reality is a location in the Florida Everglades, where dimensions intersect, which is guarded by the hero Man-Thing. The Crossroads is an intersection for routes to different worlds. The Fault is a tear in the fabric of the universe attended to by the Guardians of the Galaxy.
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Loki's trial had been seen in the "movie prequel comic" book, which served as a "bridge" between Thor (2011), The Avengers (2012), and this movie. The filmmakers liked it so much they incorporated it into this movie.
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Director Alan Taylor was unhappy with how the movie turned out. Although he had received full creative freedom while the movie was shot, he stated that the studio had turned it into a different movie during post-production; a situation he "(hoped) never to repeat, and (doesn't) wish upon anybody else."
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Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje described Kurse as "an amalgamation of a bull and a lava-like creature." For his role as Kurse, he underwent a daily three hours of make-up, and forty-pound prosthetics: "I'm sure there will be a certain amount of CGI, but a good eighty percent was me in that suit."
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According to Jake Morrison, the Asgardian skiffs in this movie work in a unique manner: "The idea is that the Asgardians came to the Viking people with ships like this, and their technologies that inspired the Vikings to begin building their longships. When you see one of these skiffs move through the water and then suddenly take flight it just keeps that whole curvy, Stan Lee-Walter Simonson world of Asgard alive."
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An abandoned plotline was to have Dr. Jane Foster turned into a villain by the Aether and destroy Svartalfheim as a show of her power before going to Earth. It was dropped in favor of keeping the focus on Malekith, and not introducing a third villain before the finale.
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Tom Hiddleston described Loki as a "firework" in this movie: "Well, where next? What's he going to do? What level of remorse does he have? If he does have any remorse or regret, why? Who does he feel guilty in front of, and who does he laugh in the face of? What's his motivation? If he stands to win, what does he stand to win? As a character, you have all of these new motivations, but as an actor, I am absolved from playing hero or villain, I'm just the live wire, and that was more fun than I can possibly tell you."
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(At around eight minutes) The stone creature Thor fights is a Kronan, an alien being that appeared in Thor's first comic, "Journey Into Mystery" #83.
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The stuntmen and extras playing the Dark Elves had to go through a training period where they practiced standing tall and proud, since the dark elves are envisioned to be a noble people. Prosthetics designer David White helped out, too, by designing the helmet so that the eye line was slightly pulled down, forcing the actors to tilt their heads slightly up and back, which gave them a very proud, strong feel.
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(At around forty-eight minutes) Malekith's thunder burned face is an homage to the classic Walt Simonson design of the character, whose face was half-purple in the comics. The starburst on his chest armor was also a nod to the original comic design.
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In the Marvel Comics, the Svartalfar (beings of Svartalfheim) are Dark Elves. In Norse Mythology, it literally means black elf.
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(At around fourteen minutes) A fair amount of improvisation was allowed on-set. Darcy Lewis (Kat Dennings) calling Dr. Erik Selvig (Stellan Skarsgård) "banana balls", was made up on the spot.
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According to Jake Morrison, the healing table instruments were based on tuning forks: "The Asgardian holograms are to do with wavelengths. The tuning forks actually create a magnetic field, and inside the field, people can interact with, and it can emit strings like on a violin. The nanotech would then display essentially a representation of Jane's soul that looks like these fine strings of gold that move through her, and at the same time are interactive."
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Jake Morrison redefined Thor's flight ability in this movie: "He's jumping to attack somebody, it should be more of a lift and land, rather than necessarily a straight-line drive. The thinking behind that is that he can control the weather, so the wind can keep him aloft to allow him to have that kind of profile."
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In the Marvel Comics and actual Norse mythology, the Einherjar are the souls of the glorious dead feasting in Valhalla. In this movie, they are Asgard's city guards.
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According to the filmmakers, amongst the Marauders the Asgardians arrest and imprison are Korbinites. These are a race of aliens Thor encountered. One of them, Beta Ray Bill, became Thor's ally, and was deemed worthy to receive an Asgardian hammer of his own.
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In late 2011, Patty Jenkins was officially announced as the director for this movie. In December 2011, she backed out of the project, due to "creative differences". Natalie Portman was publicly upset that talks between Marvel and Patty Jenkins broke down, some sources even claim she threatened to not take part in this movie with another director, but couldn't get out of her contract. Jenkins directed Wonder Woman (2017).
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Up to eleven thousand weapons were used for this movie. A team of up to twenty technicians worked to build new props, or transform some of the props from Thor (2011), with more wear and tear.
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Tom Hiddleston half-jokingly offered to direct, but was turned down, because of a lack of previous experience.
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Director Alan Taylor has said that he's "very happy to not take responsibility" for the mid-credits scene, which featured The Collector, and was directed by James Gunn. He has since apologized for this, and to James Gunn.
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Despite being the main villain (and even being on the poster), Christopher Eccleston's name doesn't appear in most of the promotional material, including the poster.
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Christopher Eccleston describes Malekith as a tragic villain: "What I thought about a great deal was revenge. One quote is: 'When you seek revenge, be sure to dig two graves.' I did a film called Revengers Tragedy (2002) where I played a guy called Vindici-from the word 'vindictive'-and he is the distillation of revenge. So, in a way, that was what I had to think of: how revenge can make you absolutely monomaniacal-though you're still trying to make it recognizably motive-led. It's just the personification of movie evil."
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Kat Dennings describes her role in this movie as a matchmaker: "She loves Jane, she really wants Jane and Thor to be together. It's almost like her own little soap opera that she watches."
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Idris Elba has said he disliked working on this movie, as the constant re-shoots were exhausting and time-consuming. He even referred to working on this movie as "torture".
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Jaimie Alexander returned as Lady Sif in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013) season one, episode fifteen, "Yes Men".
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Visual effects supervisor Jake Morrison described the final battle as Time Toffee: "As you punch through from one realm to another it's almost like a slightly gelatinous membrane you have to pass through. It bends a little bit then rips and spits the person out."
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The black hole grenade effects were based on depth charges. To capture this effect, the visual effects experts built a water tank, where they observed how depth charges operate, and their effects: "The depth charge was used for the initial blast, and it ended up adding the first part of the one-two punch, a depth charge for the expansion, and the crush as a pay-off."
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In this movie, the substance the Dark Elves are after is called the Aether. Aether is the mythological personification of the sky in Greek mythology, and later in alchemy and medieval science, as the material that fills the region of the universe above the terrestrial sphere. A reason of the use of the word "aether" can be because of its connection to dark energy, to which the Dark Elves are connected, in this movie.
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The filmmakers planned to use Thor's antagonist, the fire demon Surtur in this movie. They were going to feature Surtur's realm Muspelheim, and had scouted for fire dancers to cast as fire giants. The filmmakers eventually decided not to use Surtur, and instead featured a second look at Jotunheim from Thor (2011). A glimpse of a volcanic realm (Muspelheim) is visible during the Convergence. Surtur appeared in Thor: Ragnarök (2017).
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Mads Mikkelsen was considered for the role of Malekith, but he dropped out due to scheduling conflicts with the concurrently filming Hannibal (2013). Mikkelsen appeared in Marvel's Doctor Strange (2016).
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This is the first Marvel Studios movie to start with just the Marvel Studios logo. Aptly enough, starting with this movie, the logo has been given an update, as well as a fanfare, written by composer Brian Tyler.
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(At around thirty-eight minutes) The visual effects experts were influenced by the transformation sequences in The Avengers (2012) (the Hulk) and An American Werewolf in London (1981) (David Kessler) in the sequence where Algrim changes into Kurse.
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According to visual effects supervisor Jake Morrison, the Harrows, the spaceships used by the Dark Elves, are powered by black holes: "A black hole pulls in all directions. You stick a box around it, but if you poke a hole in one side of the box it would pull in that direction. So effectively, if you strap a craft around that, you have a propulsion drive, which is kind of an impulsion drive."
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Producer Sir Kenneth Branagh turned down directing this movie, as he felt that the locked release date didn't give him enough pre-production time, that he decided to work on Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (2014) instead.
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Valkyrie, of The Defenders (2017), was set to appear at one point, and concept art of her costume was even drawn up. The character appeared in Thor: Ragnarök (2017).
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At only one hour and fifty-two minutes, this is the shortest Marvel movie to date. It is tied with The Incredible Hulk (2008).
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Loki, in Norse Mythology, is the God of Mischief, Evil, and at one time, also the God of Firesides and Hearth. In this movie, he is the God of Mischief, and we see a hint of evil, perhaps edging towards the God of Evil side. "Loki" is additionally Old Norse for "Mischief" ( "Lokki" is Finnish for "seagull" and Latvian for "spring onion"). In Norse Mythology, Loki also had four children: Hel, the ruler of Hel, Sleipnir, an eight legged horse (we see him in Thor (2011)), Jormagund/Jormungandr, a giant sea serpent, and Fenrir, a giant wolf who will devour the sun at Ragnarök.
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Carter Burwell was to write the score, but left the movie over creative differences, and was replaced by Iron Man 3 (2013) composer Brian Tyler.
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One action scene involved one hundred forty marauders, an assortment of weapons, some from the aliens in The Avengers (2012), a mix of Roman, medieval, and nearly every Earth culture. The idea is that the gang of space pirates would have taken possession of an assortment of many types of weapons from their adventures. They use axes, swords, spears, morning stars, whips, and guns.
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Chapter Two of Phase Two in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
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About ten different designs for alien guns were created for this movie. The guns in this movie work mostly with lasers. There was a choice to avoid cartridges or ballistic weapons.
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Multiple people on the production kept referring to the dark elves as like "stormtroopers".
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To gain the muscle required for his role, Chris Hemsworth adopted a high-protein diet, and his intense workout regiment had to constantly be changed because of the filming schedule and filming locations.
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The prologue was directed by Tim Miller.
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In the comics, Dr. Jane Foster took over the Mjölnir and assumed the mantle of Thor, replacing the original character in his monthly comic book title. In July 2019, Marvel Studios announced at Comic-Con that she would become the female Thor in the fourth film, Thor: Love and Thunder, again played by Natalie Portman.
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Odin's throne room set was built on stage H at Shepperton Studios, the same stage where the ceremony scene was shot for Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977). It also housed the moon set for 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). Disney purchased Lucasfilm, Ltd. Stage H is very large, the biggest at Shepperton.
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This was cinematographer Kramer Morgenthau's first digital movie. Morgenthau used an Arri Alexa Plus camera, with Panavision anamorphic lenses: "The lenses brought some of the magic and mystery of photorealism back to digital, that big-movie look."
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(At around fifty-two minutes) In Stellan Skarsgård's first dialogue scene in this movie, he is wearing blue and yellow pants. These are the shade and color of his native country's flag: Sweden.
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The production offices on the Shepperton Studios lot, were listed as "Asgard Productions II UK Ltd.", and the fake title of the movie being used was "The Mighty Thursday Mourning", written in a font like that of the comic book-style The Mighty Thor logo.
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The delta-winged jet fighters are Eurofighter Typhoons.
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According to Jake Morrison, the Harrows navigation interface was a great way to combine outside with inside environments: "It projects the surroundings on a bubble around you. With some cockpit shots in other films, you'd cut from the exteriors that would be frenetic and fast-paced into potentially quite a dark interior with a lot of dialogue, you can make the outside very exciting, but when you get into the cockpit, how do you make that stuff fun?"
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The twelfth highest grossing movie of 2013.
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Brian Kirk had entered into early negotiations to direct, but later dropped out. Patty Jenkins was later confirmed to direct, but dropped out citing creative differences between her and Marvel. Alan Taylor and Daniel Minahan were on the final shortlist to direct, until finally Taylor got the job.
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Zachary Levi is now part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the DC Extended Universe because of this movie and Shazam! (2019).
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During the battle in Greenwich, Thor lands on the outside of a glass building and slides down it while those inside watch. This is likely a reference to Adventures in Babysitting (1987), which featured a young girl dressed as Thor sliding down the outside of a glass building in Chicago, Illinois.
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Producer Kevin Feige described this movie as "the Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980) of Marvel's Thor saga."
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(At around one hour and thirty minutes) When Thor gets on a train in the London Underground, the station he uses is Charing Cross. Sir Anthony Hopkins (Odin) starred in 84 Charing Cross Road (1987).
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This movie featured three of seven Doctor Who (2005) stars to have roles in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Christopher Eccleston appeared as one of the incarnations of the Doctor, Talulah Riley appeared in two episodes and Tony Curran appeared in one. Karen Gillan (Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)), Peter Serafinowicz (Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)), Toby Jones (Captain America: The First Avenger (2011) and Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)) and Jenna Coleman and David Bradley (Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)) have all had supporting roles in various seasons of the series.
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When Jane (Natalie Portman) and Richard (Chris O'Dowd) are at the restaurant, Richard looks up and asks the (presumed waitress) they are ready to order, it turns out to be Darcy (Kat Dennings). Dennings played a waitress on 2 Broke Girls (2011), but was Jane's intern in the Thor movies.
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Director Alan Taylor is the only director of a Thor movie who didn't later make a cameo in an Avengers movie. Sir Kenneth Branagh provided a voice-over in Avengers: Infinity War (2018), while Taika Waititi played Korg once again in Avengers: Endgame (2019).
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Jane Foster in the comics is blonde and 5'7" tall, but Natalie Portman is a brunette and only 5'3".
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Cameo 

Stan Lee: (At around fifty-two minutes) As the man who asks Dr. Erik Selvig (Stellan Skarsgård) for his shoe back, when Dr. Selvig is in the mental ward explaining the Convergence theory.
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

Tom Hiddleston (Loki) wore a Captain America suit, and did an impression of Chris Evans. Evans later showed up on-set and shot his cameo, imitating Hiddleston's impression.
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According to Natalie Portman, she was not available to film the post-credit scene where Thor and Jane Foster finally kiss. Instead it was shot with Chris Hemsworth's wife Elsa Pataky.
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(At around one hour and one minute) Chris Evans spoke of Loki's Captain America impersonation: "I spent over two years trying to not play Steve Rogers that over-the-top!"
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Joss Whedon was brought in to do uncredited re-writes for a few scenes, including the extremely brief encounter with Kronan (which was originally a much longer scene) and Loki briefly masquerading as Captain America in a hallway conversation with Thor.
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(At around one hour) The Asgard soldier that Loki impersonates as he walks with Thor down the long hallway scene is the same soldier that informs Odin of Loki's death (at around one hour and twenty-five minutes).
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(At around one hour and forty minutes) The Aether is identified by the Collector to be an Infinity Gem. Its red color identifies it as the Gem of Power. However, according to James Gunn, the Gem of Power is the one that appears in Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) (The Orb).
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Odin's fate was given different answers by some of the crew. Producer Kevin Feige didn't outright answer the question, but said that there are plans for him, director Alan Taylor thought he was dead, but wanted to know how he'd end up in the sequel, and Sir Anthony Hopkins didn't have an idea, and believed that he was dead. As of the release of Thor: Ragnarök (2017), Odin is alive, but dies part way through the movie.
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According to producer Kevin Feige, every Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase 2 movie has an homage to the Star Wars saga, in the form of a character losing an arm. In Iron Man 3 (2013), Aldrich Killian loses an arm during the battle with Tony Stark. In this movie, Loki cuts off Thor's arm on Svartalfheim, but is revealed to be an illusion. In the final battle, Malekith also loses his arm. In Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), Bucky lost his arm during his fall from the train, and it has been replaced by a mechanical one. In Guardians of the Galaxy (2014), Gamora cuts off Groot's arm during the group's initial scuffle on Xandar. Later, Nebula cuts off her own arm to escape. In Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015), Ulysses Klaue loses his hand to Ultron.
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The mid-credits scene of handing over the Aether to the Collector can be a reference to the comics, where he had the reality Infinity Stone, but unaware of its true power. In the scene however, he is fully aware that it is an Infinity Stone.
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A dead giveaway that Odin was being impersonated by Loki at the end of this movie is his posture. When the real Odin is seated on his throne, he sits evenly and upright, proudly. When Loki rules Asgard in Thor (2011), he sits on the throne at an angle, leaning toward his left. At the end of this movie, Odin is seated in the exact same posture as Loki.
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When Loki is masquerading as Steve Rogers, you can hear the first strains Alan Silvestri's main title theme song from Captain America: The First Avenger (2011).
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(At around thirty minutes) Dr. Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) gets annoyed when Odin (Sir Anthony Hopkins) says she belongs in Asgard, like a goat belongs at a banquet table. Ironically, in the final scene of the movie on Earth (prior to the credits) she is seen eating at a kitchen table with a container of what is clearly labelled as goat's milk.
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Possibly the only movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, where H.Y.D.R.A. (or H.Y.D.R.A. as S.H.I.E.L.D.) does not influence the plot, even in the end credits scenes.
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This is the only Marvel movie (besides Avengers: Infinity War (2018)) where Loki does not wear his horned helmet.
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The first non-Iron Man Marvel Cinematic Universe movie in which the lead villain is killed off by the end of the movie.
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(At around one hour and three minutes) During Loki's (Tom Hiddleston's) and Thor's (Chris Hemsworth's) escape of Asgard with Dr. Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), Thor's three friends assist by battling Asgardian guards. Fandral (Zachary Levi) and Volstagg (Ray Stevenson) are not shown killing any guards. Sif's (Jamie Alexander's) battle isn't shown, but if she followed the same principles, they were able to assist Thor and Loki without killing fellow Asgardians.
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Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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