Casting for movies is a big job, and it’s got to be done right. While some roles are written either for an actor or with a specific actor in mind, that isn’t done often, and usually it’s up to the casting crew to get the right actors for the job. In cases like Thor, where the character has his own trilogy with a fourth movie on the way — along with multiple appearances in other Marvel properties — it’s almost impossible to imagine anyone other than Chris Hemsworth as the god of thunder. But Chris Hemsworth was a relatively unknown actor at the time, and Thor had some big shoes to fill, so Marvel did look in other directions first; Alexander Skarsgard was one of the actors Marvel took a look at in the beginning stages.
Alexander Skarsgard was close to playing Thor
Alexander Skarsgard was one of just a handful of actors who moved on to final casting stages, according to BuzzFeed. He had met with both Marvel exec Kevin Feige and Thor director Kenneth Branagh. He’d even donned the suit and wielded the iconic Mjolnir, Thor’s hammer.
Skarsgard was one of only few that actually both auditioned in costume, and also spoke with both Feige and Branagh. He called the audition “fun,” but ultimately lost out on the role to a relatively unknown actor at the time.
Chris Hemsworth took the role, while Skarsgard moved on to other things
It’s definitely hard to imagine anyone other than Chris Hemsworth in the role of MCU’s Thor. Hemsworth has brought a sense of humor and fun to a role that needed that touch, but he can also bring the angst when it’s needed. Thor has been through the wringer in the MCU, gaining and losing family as a matter of course in almost all the movies in which he’s featured.
Skarsgard may have lost out on the role of Thor, but he went on to star in the True Blood series as Eric Northman. The Swedish actor also went on to play the titular role in 2016’s Tarzan.
Skarsgard has since expressed interest in the MCU
During interviews about almost netting the role of Thor, Alexander Skarsgard has said that it would be fun to be included in future projects. In the MTV interview, he said “it’s every little boy’s dream” to play a superhero.
Skarsgard is no stranger to playing fantastical roles. His turn as a vampire on True Blood grounded him in fantasy worlds, while his role as Tarzan showed that he could be an epic action hero. He also starred in 2021’s Godzilla vs Kong.
Skarsgard can also be seen in 2020/21 miniseries The Stand, as Randall Flagg. Flagg was one of the main villains in the series. With this role, he proved that he can also play a villain — so even if a superhero isn’t in Skarsgard’s future, then perhaps he could hold his own as a supervillain.
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