Natalie Portman
THOR: THE DARK WORLD, Natalie Portman, 2013. /©Walt Disney Studios

There were few jaw-droppers at SDCC this year as big as the revelation that Natalie Portman would not only be returning to the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the role of Jane Foster, but that Jane would become the new female Thor, just as she did in the comics, and would co-headline the next ‘Thor’ movie, ‘Love and Thunder’.  Portman has publicly expressed her dislike for making the ‘Thor’ movies (similarly to the way she felt about the ‘Star Wars’ prequels).  She very clearly refused to appear in supporting roles in other Marvel entries, like the ‘Avengers’ flicks.  (Stellan Skarsgård’s Erik Selvig was given the supporting role.  Jane appeared in photographs.)

We all thought that Jane had moved away, perhaps sharing an apartment somewhere with Betty Ross (Liv Tyler, remember her?!).  So a few audible gasps were heard when Portman’s Jane appeared in the flesh in ‘Avengers: Endgame’, during the time Thor and Rocket traveled back to the time of the events of ‘Thor: The Dark World’.

And then, during Marvel Studios’ massive panel at SDCC, Portman appeared on stage where director Taika Waititi bowed and presented her with her own Mjolnir.

Portman has remained mum about returning to the MCU, but while promoting her new space flick ‘Lucy in the Sky’, she spoke about being drawn back into the superhero realm.

“They came to me. Obviously I wasn’t written into the third Thor because of where it took place. It wasn’t really on Earth and my character was on Earth.  And then they came to me with the fourth idea and said, you know, ‘We have this idea, that was a storyline in some of the comics, where Jane becomes Lady Thor.’ And I was like, this is very exciting. And also of course with Taika, and I love Tessa [Thompson] and Chris [Hemsworth] so much. So it’s exciting to get to work with them again. And yeah, I’m very excited to wield the hammer.”

The Jane Foster Thor proved quite popular in the comics, although her time in the role has come to an end.  During that storyline, Jane had cancer, but wielding Mjolnir, which rids its owner of chemical and radiation was wiping out her chemotherapy, killing her mortal form faster every time she used it.  But there’s no guarantee that the film will follow that storyline.

There’s still over a year before ‘Thor: Love and Thunder’ opens on November 5, 2021, so check back for updates as they arrive.