“Thor: Love and Thunder”: “We are witnessing an all-out war on women” – Natalie Portman

Natalie Portman makes a powerful comeback in Thor: Love and Thunder as her Jane Foster character transforms into Mighty Thor with Mjolnir. Artificially grown for the needs of feature film but naturally muscular, the actress spoke with conviction about the need to offer strong women on the big screen, especially in these troubled times.

Thor, played by Chris Hemsworth, is not a superhero like the rest. He is the only character to have been credited with four films, in addition to his appearances in three Marvel feature films and the television series What If…?.

Natalie Portman, she’s not an actress like the rest. In addition to her role in “Léon” opposite Jean Reno, she has also been part of the “Star Wars” franchise, receiving two Golden Globes for “The Black Swan” and “Intimate”, a BAFTA and an Oscar, both for “The black”. She is also a producer, screenwriter and director and, along with Tessa Thompson, who is reprising her role as Valkyrie, helped found Time’s Up, an association that helps victims of gender-based violence as part of their legal employment …

in battle

If she’s agreed to reprise her role as Jane, which she last starred in in Thor: A Dark World — in fact, her appearance in Avengers: Endgame was made through reshoots for the previous film — it’s because of that because she was no longer “the little bitch”. Now she fights alongside Thor and Valkyrie to repel the threat of Gorr (Christian Bale) in a downright wacky, colorful and entertaining comedy directed by Taika Waititi.

“My view of superheroes has changed over the years. Having the opportunity to play Jane was an interesting way to explore the role of a superhero who is both vulnerable and weak while finding exceptional strength. I saw all the work that goes into playing a superhero, which I didn’t realize when I was playing the “Pitoune” on duty. I didn’t see everything that happened behind the scenes, the choreography of the fights, the training,” she said during the press conference on the film’s presentation, which preceded the interview with QMI agency.

“After watching Chris play Thor for so many years it was crazy to try the costume, it was surreal,” she said. Her training lasted 10 months, almost a full year, during which she lifted weights, boxed, pilates, jump rope and many other exercises to get her to develop the muscles we see on screen. And during filming, she started around 4:30 a.m. to exercise for an hour a day.

Since Natalie Portman is small at 1.60m tall, director Taika Watiti had to find a way to make her appear taller next to Chris Hemsworth who is 1.90m tall. The solution was relatively simple: the actress moved on a elevated platform. “I applaud the imagination of everyone who made it possible to choose a little actress,” she said, laughing.

Invented either just after World War II or in the 1960s and 1970s, superheroes are more popular than ever today, with Marvel and DC vying for hundreds of millions of dollars and more spectacular special effects to bring the adventures of masked vigilantes to the public screen .

“I’m so happy that Jane is turning into Mighty Thor and I think the first comic to feature this change dates back to 2014,” she said in an interview with QMI Agency. The fact that Jane is a scientist has never been more explored than in this film. And for her to become a superhero was an amazing opportunity.”

A war against women

Wonder Woman, Captain Marvel, Black Widow, Harley Quinn, Valkyrie… and now Mighty Thor, heroines with amazing powers are legion to the delight of fans. But the US Supreme Court’s decision to strike down the state’s abortion law came with terrible irony over the weekend of premieres, press conferences and interviews for Thor: Love and Thunder. Natalie Portman was interviewed the day after the announcement and didn’t hesitate to throw both feet on the topic when the opportunity arose.

“Indeed, female superheroes are needed more than ever. Right now we are witnessing an all-out war against women in our country and in other regions of the world. The representations of different opportunities, different empowerment for women is a pressing need today. I look to the powers of my fellow women for inspiration and comfort.”

Thor: A Dark World was released in 2013, nine years ago, an eternity for the cinema industry now marked by the emergence of the #MeToo movement in 2016. But those changes weren’t what caught Natalie’s Portman being the hardest thing on set.

“Taika is a unique creator and I had never worked with anyone like him. It was a pleasure to be on his set and that’s the main difference of this film when I compare it to anything I’ve done before. He brings so much joy and spontaneity to every moment of filming that it almost feels like he’s in charge of making sure everyone on set has fun. He makes music all the time, he spends his time cracking jokes, he’s so warm and friendly. His humor is always generous and never humiliating to others. It creates a fully collaborative environment. He brings everyone’s ideas into the production and we all feel like part of a family.”

Thor: Amour et tonnerre hits Quebec screens on July 8th.

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