Natalie Portman Would Love to Reprise Controversial MCU Role

in Entertainment, Marvel

Jane Foster AKA Mighty Thor (Natalie Portman) in 'Thor: Love and Thunder'

Credit: Marvel Studios

After sparking rumors of her potential Star Wars return as Queen Padmé Amidala, it seems like Oscar-winner Natalie Portman is all ears when it comes to reprising her role in a different Disney-owned franchise: Marvel.

Natalie Portman as Jane Foster/Mighty Thor (left) and Chris Hemsworth as Thor (right)
Credit: Marvel Studios

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It’s easy to forget that Natalie Portman is — despite not actually playing an Avenger — technically a founding member of the MCU. Making her franchise debut as astrophysicist Dr. Jane Foster alongside Chris Hemsworth’s eponymous God of Thunder in Thor (2011), the actress went on to star in Alan Taylor’s ill-fated Thor: The Dark World (2013) before essentially taking a break from all Marvel Studios projects for nearly ten years.

Flash forward to years later, when Taika Waititi, the mastermind behind fan-favorite MCU entry Thor: Ragnarok (2017), approached Portman about returning for a fourth Thor movie set post-Avengers: Endgame (2019). Waititi envisioned a romance film and 1980s-inspired adventure that captured some of the same lightheartedness and comic relief as its predecessor. After hearing his pitch, Portman agreed to sign onto the project, and the movie was announced during the studio’s panel at San Diego Comic-Con.

Jane Foster in 'Thor: Love and Thunder'
Credit: Marvel Studios

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The pandemic significantly delayed production, but after a long wait, Thor: Love and Thunder (2022) flew into theaters in July 2022 to less-than-stellar reviews, which was a surprise to fans considering how successful Ragnarok was in reviving interest in the dying Thor franchise. Following essentially the same story as Jason Aaron Thor: God of Thunder comic book run during the 2010s, Love and Thunder similarly debuted Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale) and saw Jane Foster take on the mantle and powers of Thor as “The Mighty Thor” while under treatment for cancer.

Unfortunately, Thor: Love and Thunder is widely regarded as one of, if not the worst, MCU movies of all time, proving that there could indeed be too much of a good thing when it came to Waititi’s ambitious vision for the character. Waititi has (supposedly) since been removed from the upcoming Thor 5 (TBA), though it’s unclear if Marvel and Disney ever had plans to reinstate him at the helm in the first place. But regardless of the criticism surrounding the latest Thor movie, Portman recently expressed interest in returning to the MCU.

Jane Foster as Mighty Thor
Credit: Marvel Studios

 

Coming out of Love and Thunder, there are certainly a lot of rumors about the future of the franchise, especially as Marvel gears up for its impending Multiverse Saga. And if the MCU needs Portman to return as The Mighty Thor, potentially for a Multiversal team-up in Avengers: The Kang Dynasty (2026) and Avengers: Secret Wars (2027), it sounds like she’s more than willing to return.

Speaking with Vanity Fair while reflecting back on her career, Portman replied, “it would be so fun” when asked if she would return to Marvel in the future, joking, “You get a lot of cool points with your kids when you do a superhero movie.”

natailie portman (left) as jane foster and chris hemsworth (right) as thor gazing at each other in thor: love and thunder
Credit: Marvel Studios

“It’s pretty amazing, you know, you kind of feel like, ‘Oh I guess I’ll just get to play petite women my whole life,'” she added. “And then they’re like, ‘No, you’re gonna play a 6’3 character.’ Then you watch yourself on screen and I’m like, ‘This is what it looks like to be like a big person. This is what it feels like.”

Portman also touched on the work she did to prepare for the role, joking about her disdain for protein shakes while bulking up to play The Mighty Thor. “The most surprising thing was how much you have to eat,” she revealed. “Like it was all about like protein shakes all day, which are just so gross after a while. So it was a funny world to get an insight into.”

Check out the full Vanity Fair interview on YouTube below:

It’s interesting to hear Portman express interest in returning to Marvel shortly after revealing that she’s open to reprising her Star Wars Prequel Trilogy role as Padmé Amidala following Hayden Christensen’s return as Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader for the Disney+ Obi-Wan Kenobi miniseries and more recently, Ahsoka. 

Given that Ewan McGregor, Temuera Morrison, Diego Luna, Mark Hamill, and several others have reprised their roles in the galaxy far, far away in recent years, there’s a chance Portman is simply feeling the pressure to come back, despite her character being killed off in the final moments of Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith III (2005). Lucasfilm would, admittedly, have to jump through some serious hoops to explain Padmé’s resurrection, but if a non-canon show like a potential Star Wars “what if” anthology was to be green-lit, the door would certainly be open for her return.

senator padme amidala
Credit: Lucasfilm

Although it seems unlikely that we’ll see Padmé appear in future Star Wars projects, Jane Foster’s does seem more likely. Of course, the renowned scientist tragically lost her battle with cancer in the climax of Love and Thunder, but with the Multiverse allowing for infinite possibilities and scenarios, there’s almost certainly a timeline where The Mighty Thor lives. Still, it’s hard to imagine Portman returning to her superhero days, with her performance in May December (2023) likely to land her yet another Academy Award nomination. Fans should never say never, though, especially on the cusp of her recent remarks.

Season 1 of Marvel Studios’ What If…? already explored Jane and “Party Thor’s” relationship in an alternate reality where Loki (Tom Hiddleston) was never adopted into the Odinson family, and it seems likely she’ll pop up in the fast-approaching Season 2. Considering Portman lent her voice to the animated TV series for Season 1, her return as The Mighty Thor could come sooner than expected and might lay the foundation for her eventual comeback in live-action. For now, however, only time will tell.

What is your favorite Natalie Portman movie or TV show? Let us know in the comments below!

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