The Marvel Cinematic Universe has made a habit of reinventing well-known comic book characters for the big screen.
Thor: Ragnarok continues that tradition with its characterization of Valkyrie.
In the comics Valkyrie is a blond-haired, blue-eyed Asgardian goddess. In the film she will be played by Tessa Thompson. This change immediately lets fans know this Valkyrie will be different from what is in the comics.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Thompson says director Taika Waititi was inspired by Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2, and describes her Valkyrie by saying “she’s a real, real badass.”
When Idris Elba was cast as Heimdall in the first Thor, there was the usual racial outrage disguised under the stay faithful to the material mantra. Unfortunately, Thompson can expect the same reaction to her portrayal, however, she has a genuine understanding of why her casting is so important.
“We have so many conversations particularly now about representation in film,” continued the Creed actress. “I think the unfortunate thing about a lot of these fantasy movies is when they’re based on source material, a lot of these comics were written in a time when that wasn’t a part of the conversation as far as having representation. Not just having characters that reflect the world we live in but how we represent the characters.”
Thompson also understands that the portrayal of female heroes is just as important to the conversation of representation.
“If we were also dedicated to the source material, Valkyrie would potentially be a female Thor, but she’s fighting in basically a bathing suit, which is also absurd. So we had a conversation of what is a strong look? Like, she should probably be in pants. That probably makes more sense for the kind of work she’s doing,” said Thompson. “And we had conversations about her sort of feeling like a tomboy and having a certain masculinity about her while still being very much a woman.”
Thor: Ragnarok stars Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Anthony Hopkins, Cate Blanchett, Jeff Goldblum, Mark Ruffalo and flies into theaters Nov. 3.
Source: Comic Book Resources