While Captain America and Iron Man had their trilogies, Thor is the only one of the original Avengers to have a fourth film to his name. As the only character in the MCU with the most amount of sequels, Thor is set for one more film. A lot was expected of Thor: Love and Thunder, and the film was light on tone and substance, leaving a lot of fans wanting more.
Chris Hemsworth has made it vehemently clear that he would want a new direction for the character if he were to return for the character of Thor. While the first 2 films positioned Thor as a fantasy film, the latter two films in the franchise have taken the Norse God to space, crafting a space opera fit to be compared to the likes of James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy,
Therefore, given that rumors have been circulating the internet about Thor 5, there is a theory that could deduce what the film will be trying to do.
The villain for Thor 5 could introduce a fan-favorite character
When Thor was fighting Hela, Odin appeared to the God of Thunder in a vision. He said ‘Asgard is not a place, it is a people.’ With that, Thor left Odin’s palace and the surrounding city destroyed by Surtr, in a bid to kill Hela. While we see the entire planetoid explode, neither Hela nor Surtur are confirmed to be dead. While Hela’s demise is the one that is implied, it is still pretty possible that the character is alive in Hel (as Loki thought he was). Further, the Eternal Flame and Surtur’s Crown could save the Fire Giant from being killed in an explosion.
So what does a Fire Giant who has supposedly fulfilled his purpose do? Wreck havoc across the cosmos, of course. Apart from Surtur, other enemies for Thor have been pushed on the board, ready to take on the God of Thunder in Battle. Chief among them is Hercules, the son of Zeus, who has been tasked by the King of the Gods himself to strike fear in the hearts of mortals to get them to respect the gods again.
While there is little precedent for Hercules and Surtur to team up against Thor, there is no reason for Hercules to clash with the God of Thunder directly in this film either. Surtur has been the historical catalyst for another character’s entry into Thor’s neck of the universe: Beta Ray Bill. The Korbinite, in all his incarnations, finds himself fighting Thor before becoming his ally. Who is to say an aimless Surtur doesn’t destroy Bill’s home, and Hercules directs the alien to Thor? His reputation as a giant slayer and the bad blood he has with Jotunheim might be all the proof Bill needs to seek out Thor and fight him.
Surtr could be the main antagonist for Thor 5
As Beta Ray Bill and Thor battle, Hercules tells Surtr what Odin told Thor: ‘Asgard is not a place. It’s a people, causing the fire giant to mount a single-handed invasion of Earth. However, it would be important to resolve the conflict between Beta Ray Bill and Thor, and this is where we can bring in his relationship with Love. In the wake of Gorr and Jane Foster’s death, Thor has changed his views on godhood.
The film could also focus on him genuinely trying to help people outside of superheroics and building genuine relationships with people, whether they consider him to be a god or not. This pays off, as the community comes to rescue the god, causing Beta Ray Bill to question his actions. By the time they reconcile, Thor and Bill, perhaps assisted by Valkyrie and Sif, square up to fight the invading Surtr.
Of course, the film ends in Surtr’s defeat. Thor has successfully protected his family, gained an ally, and all around resolved to become a better god. But Hercules would set up the next villain of the franchise, along with himself, by getting hold of a prophecy, one that introduces an antagonist and brings back old enemies of Thor who not only are present in the comic books, but also in Thor’s source material: Frost Giants, and among them is the being destined to kill Thor at the end of the world: Jormungandr, The World Serpent.
A lot is riding on Thor 5: So who should direct it?
The theory presented requires Thor (and by extension, Hercules) to have a two-film arc. The story will be about Thor confronting his past self in Hercules, who has yet to learn what it means to be a god. For this reason, a director who comes on board for Thor 5 needs to be able to stick around for Thor 6. Given that this is a more emotionally complex film about Thor that delves deep into the comics and real-world lore of the character, more than a few directors come to mind.
First, there is Patty Jenkins, who has directed the films like Wonder Woman. Diana’s arc in the story could reflect very well on Thor’s realization of what it means to be a god. The character will not see himself as above the people but as their peer, something we see Wonder Woman do in the 2017 film.
Another choice that could do well for the film is Aquaman director James Wan. Given the reorganization of the DC Universe, some of these directors might be on the lookout for new work. Wan’s experience with Aquaman (which grossed over a billion dollars) could be fruitful to the story. Given the inclusion of Surtr, Olympus, and Jotunheim in the story, A version of the War of the Realms storyline would work great in the hands of the director, given how he handled the Seven Kingdoms in Aquaman.
If Marvel is more keen on hiring in-house talent for the project, there is always Justin Bensan and Aaron Moorhead. The duo are currently working on Marvel’s Daredevil: Born Again series, and have proven themselves with Loki Season 2 and Moon Knight. Given how well-received Loki was, the directors could handle all the emotional maturity that comes with the film, as Thor (and Hercules) figure out the kind of gods they want to be.
When it comes to gods and monsters, one word pops out from Hollywood: Guillermo Del Toro. The Hellboy director is well-versed with curses and magic in his films, while also humanizing monsters, a skill essential to make the audience relate with the likes of Beta Ray Bill.
Given the emotionally mature approach of the two films, it would also be great if Marvel could get Northman director Robert Eggers on as the director. Already having dealt with Vikings in his films, the director could bring back the much-needed emotional depth and complexity in the story. Another director fit to do so, is Zack Snyder. From Watchmen to 300, to Man of Steel, the director has the vision to execute a great Thor duology, especially with his technical understanding of his craft.