Chris Hemsworth reveals the secrets behind playing Fat Thor
The Avengers: Endgame actor opens up about wearing a fat suit and what it’s like having people rub his belly.
For fans who were used to seeing Chris Hemsworth as the buff Norse god Thor, it was a surprise to see his transformation in Avengers: Endgame.
The actor had to endure several hours of makeup to become what can only be called Fat Thor for the recent record-breaking Marvel movie. The new look, complete with bushy beard and a pot belly, was to show the impact the Avengers’ loss to Thanos in the previous movie, Infinity War, had on the superhero.
In the new Variety cover story, Hemsworth revealed that Fat Thor was supposed to revert to his usual hunky self by the middle of the movie, but the actor fought to keep the flabby version. “It was so different than any other way I played the character. And then it took on a life of its own,” he said. “I like that anything goes. You’re not locked into expectation.”
He also said he referred to himself on set as Lebowski Thor, making reference to the movie The Big Lebowski where the main character was a slacker played by Jeff Bridges.
The 35-year-old Australian, who said that he enjoyed playing that version of Thor, had to go through a gruelling transformation for the role. “Physically, it was a good three hours in hair and makeup. Then the prosthetic suit, particularly the shirt-off scene – that was a big silicone that weighed about 90 pounds (41kg). It was certainly exhausting. I had weights on my hands and ankles just to have my arms and legs swing differently when I shuffled along through the set.”
He also got a lot of attention when he was in the prosthetic suit. He said: “People just kept coming up and cuddling me like a big bear or rubbing my belly like I was pregnant. Or trying to sit on my lap like I was Santa Claus. You get a lot of affection. I felt like an old man, an old grandpa, with a bunch of kids around.”
However, “then you get sick of it when people come up and grab your belly. ‘Don’t grab me like that!’ I know how my wife felt when strangers would come up and rub her belly.”
Hemsworth has three kids – seven-year-old daughter India Rose and five-year-old twin sons Sasha and Tristan – with actress and producer wife, Elsa Pataky.
He'll next be seen in Men In Black: International, which hits cinemas in June, where he stars opposite Tessa Thompson as the new agents.
However, he’s not quite ready to say goodbye to Thor, a role he’s been playing since 2011. “I’d still love to do more, to be honest. And I don’t know what the plan is. I feel like we’ve opened up such a different character. I feel more energised for the possibility of where it could go. But I’ll use that in other places and other characters if it’s the end here.”