There's a lot to be excited about when it comes to Thor: Love and Thunder. Not only will both director Taika Watiti and Chris Hemsworth be returning, but Natalie Portman's Jane Foster is back in action—and this time with Mjolnir in hand. However, there's another element of the upcoming sequel which is potentially cause for the most excitement: Christian Bale's Gorr the God Butcher.
The big bad of the next Thor outing looks truly terrifying. While he didn't get a chance to shine in the first teaser for the project, the second trailer more than made up for it. It seems the Marvel Cinematic Universe has come a long way from the days of Malekith the Dark Elf.
So what does he want? Well, the extinction of all Gods, of course. But what's the cause of this dark crusade of his? According to Hemsworth, it's a complex one.
Christian Bale's Complex Gorr
In an interview with Disney's D23 Magazine, as obtained by The Direct, Thor: Love and Thunder director and actor Taika Watiti and star Chris Hemsworth discussed the film's big bad, Gorr the God Butcher, and what makes Christian Bale's villain so complex.
Watiti explained how his "backstory involves being wronged by the gods" and that they wanted to explore "what it means to put your faith in a higher power:"
"Gorr's backstory involves being wronged by the gods, and a lot of his motivation is getting revenge for these wrongdoings... we really wanted to explore this idea of religion, belief, and what it means to put your faith in a higher power. And because Thor is essentially a god, what does it mean for him to represent these gods?"
Hemsworth noted how Gorr "has a truthful motivation" and that audiences will be able to "understand why he's been tipped over the edge and why he's gone down this path:"
"[Gorr is] not a straightforward villain... there's a real complexity to him. It's not black and white, what he's doing. He has a truthful motivation, which I think makes for the most interesting kind of villain. You might not agree with how he's going about it, but you understand why he's been tipped over the edge and why he's gone down this path. It's a really challenging one for Thor, because the set of questions Gorr's posing does hold some truth—but he can't let Gorr destroy the universe in the process. That, I think, makes this a greater dynamic and not as predictable as the straightforward good gut vs. bad guy scenario we've seen before."
Chris Hemsworth is a Gorr Fan
From the sounds of it, director Taika Watiti seems to have kept Gorr's origin story in the same wheelhouse as the source material. In the comics, Gorr's whole life was founded on believing that the gods would save them from the hellish conditions of his backwater planet. Yet, after the death of his mother, wife, and children, no gods were seen.
So when Gorr eventually stumbled into a crater housing two dying gods, he promptly finished them off and took the Necrosword off of one of them—a weapon that gave him the power to start his violent and ruthless crusade. Given his demeanor in the footage revealed so far, it doesn't look like Bale's take on the character will be letting up at all.
The hype behind Thor's next enemy is high, so hopefully what the team behind Love and Thunder has in store for audiences will more than exceed expectations. Maybe Bale's Gorr will miraculously survive the events of the film and come back in future MCU projects.
Thor: Love and Thunder hits theaters on July 8.