Strange new faces, strange new places... and a Hulk. Jordan Farley journeys to the set of Thor:Ragnarok to find how the MCU’s resident space Viking is going cosmic
It's the end of Thor’s world as he knows it, and he’s feeling… well, a little worse for wear, actually. Asgard and its people are on the brink of obliteration, Mjolnir has been shattered into a million pieces, and Thor has suffered a nasty injury that will likely leave a gnarly scar. Fortunately for the God of Thunder, he has friends (from work).
It’s September 2016, and SFX is on the Queensland set of Thor: Ragnarok, the film putting the ro(c)k ’n’ roll back into the series after the disappointment of The Dark World. At one end of the Bifrost Bridge Chris Hemsworth’s Thor, his hair shorn and one sword in each hand, is standing shoulder to shoulder with his adoptive brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston), warrior woman Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) and a mean, green Avenger. They’re about to throw down with the woman responsible for Thor’s misfortunes – Hela, the Goddess of Death (Cate Blanchett). All roads, it seems, lead to the rainbow bridge.
“Thor goes on this grand cosmic adventure [in Ragnorak],” says producer Brad Winterbaum. “And by the time it all wraps up, you have elements from every single place he’s been. Everything coalesces into this grand finale that’s pretty amazing.”
“Pretty amazing” could apply to almost everything SFX sees on the staggering Ragnarok set. While gods and monsters are on a cigarette break, we’re taken on a whistlestop tour of Asgard. Every inch of the city’s central plaza has been built on the open air backlot. The 100 x 50m set took four months and 450 construction workers to erect, and extends to two floors. There’s even a stream running through the middle of it. It’s here that Ragnarok’s story begins.
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