Sad news for Thor fans: Though he was originally confirmed to return, Joshua Dallas (Fandral) has had to bow out of the highly anticipated sequel, due to commitments to the TV series Once Upon A Time. Instead, it looks like Marvel has set its gaze on Zachary Levi (Chuck) to join the cast as the flirtatious, Errol Flynn-esque member of the Warriors Three [THR].
Dallas said this regarding his departure (via EW):
“I’ll be missing out on wearing all that hair […] The timing wasn’t right. I’m bummed about it because I had such a great experience and great time making the first film and was really excited about coming back. Marvel and Disney tried to make it work. But because of my commitment to Once Upon a Time, I was not going to be able to do both. So I’ll have to hand the reins over to someone else. I love Marvel. I wish them all the best. I will certainly be first in line to see it.”
There’s no guarantee on Levi yet, as his talks are still in the preliminary stages. However, THR believes an offer is fast approaching, thanks in part to the production start time being this summer’s end. If he joins, this will continue the this character’s rollercoaster casting ride; the actor was originally in talks to play the role in 2010, but was forced to abandon ship when the NBC cult favorite Chuck receive a last-minute renewal and episode extension. Stewart Townsend then nabbed the part, but was replaced by Dallas days before filming began due to “creative differences.” (Not the first time that’s happened with him…) Levi‘s potential casting then brings things full circle.
Fandral’s part in the first film was small, as he, Sif, and the other members of the Warriors Three were mostly there to provide comic relief and unneeded support for Thor. I’m still hoping that incoming director Alan Taylor (Game of Thrones) finds a way to add a bit more depth to Fandral and Thor’s other friends, and perhaps this new casting will be just the catalyst needed. Though I loved the charm and humor Dallas brought to the role, it’ll be interesting to see what Levi, known for his comedic (and, at times, dramatic) chops on Chuck and in Tangled can bring to the character.
Kevin Feige will produce a script by Thor co-writer Don Payne and Robert Rodat (Saving Private Ryan, The Patriot). Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston, Idris Elba, and Anthony Hopkins are all confirmed to return, with Mads Mikkelsen in talks to play the film’s villain. Thor 2 will start production this August in London for a November 8th, 2013 release.
Would you like to see Zachary Levi in Thor 2?
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