As the MCU continues to grow, the interest from A-List Hollywood talent becomes more and more apparent.
From big name actors signing on for multi-picture deals to top talent appearing as one and done antagonists, the magnetism of a Marvel Studios project is very much real.
Matt Damon has joined the already stacked cast of Thor: Love and Thunder.
According to numerous Australian news outlets, the Academy Award winner landed in Sydney, Australia yesterday via a private jet to begin his mandatory quarantine ahead of production.
While he is yet to star in an MCU project, Damon is no stranger to the Marvel Universe, and specifically the Thor franchise. He previously had a cameo in Thor: Ragnarok as an actor playing Loki in the Asgardian stage play at the beginning of that film.
Barry ‘Baz’ Idoine was confirmed to have joined the crew of 'Thor: Love and Thunder' as the film's cinematographer.
Taika Waititi confirmed that 'Thor: Love and Thunder' only has "four weeks" left of filming while also praising the MCU movie as something that “might be the best Marvel film ever.”
Russell Crowe confirmed that he will play Zeus in 'Thor: Love and Thunder.'
WHAT THIS MEANS
It feels a little odd to say “Matt Damon is back in the MCU,” but technically, that's the case.
As mentioned above, Damon had a very brief role in Thor: Ragnarok as the play version of Loki, hamming it up in an exaggerated stage production that portrayed the God of Mischief as dying a heroic death. Damon's return does lead fans to believe he will be back as this fake Loki, but there are other ways he could factor in.
For starters, Damon plays an unnamed Asgardian actor in Ragnarok. When he returns for Love and Thunder, he could very well expand upon that role outside the theatrical realm. The beauty of the ambiguity of Damon's previous Marvel role is that he doesn't necessarily have anything set in stone just yet, so director Taika Waititi has the freedom to play around with where he takes the actor's character without worrying too much about continuity.
Another way Damon could play into this flick is just in another cameo appearance, but completely separate from his previous Marvel role. His role in Ragnarok was a nice nod to his friendship with Waititi, so this latest MCU role could be another way of winking at audiences again.
While those two options seem the most likely, let's look at the circumstances a bit.
With all the protocols actors have to jump through these days, it feels a bit forced to fly an A-Lister halfway across the world on a private jet and subdue him to a mandatory quarantine just to shoot a brief uncredited cameo. It's hard to imagine Waititi going through all that trouble to bring Damon in if it is just for a cameo.
Beyond that, Damon has previously worked with the film's main antagonist, Christian Bale's Gorr the God Butcher, in the acclaimed Ford v. Ferrari, a film that garnered rave reviews and Oscar nominations not just for its gripping plot, but for the undeniable chemistry between Bale and Damon's leading characters. Could Damon factor into this movie as Gorr's right-hand man, similar to how Karl Urban's Skurge assisted Cate Blanchett's Hela in Ragnarok? Time will tell.
Thor: Love and Thunder is set to hit theaters on February 11, 2022.