Why Chris Hemsworth Almost Passed on First 'Thor' Film

The Aussie actor shares his reason for nearly declining the offer to play Marvel's mighty superhero.

Chris Hemsworth in Sydney Australia
Mark Metcalfe / Stringer / Getty

When the role of a lifetime presents itself to an up-and-coming actor, they usually jump in head-first, no questions asked. However, that wasn't the case when a young Chris Hemsworth was offered the lead in Marvel's Thor back in 2009.

While given the opportunity to play the God of Thunder seems like a no-brainer decision, the jacked Aussie actor wasn't immediately sold. As a matter of fact, he seriously considered passing up the project altogether.

During a recent press junket for Thor: Ragnarok, Hemsworth was candid about his lack of enthusiasm for the superhero role. Here's what he had to say about being offered the part:

"I was crossing the road in Vancouver...and I remember the exact moment getting a call from from my lawyer and my manager saying 'you got the offer,'" he said. "And then kind of going 'oh wow, cool. So what is it?' 'It's a superhero thing, and it's a six-picture deal.' And we were like 'that's a lot of films to sign up for. We should pass on this.'"

Pretty ballsy move from someone just coming off of an Australian soap opera, but one that he fortunately didn't follow through with.

Once officially on board, the actor from down under began hitting the weights for the role, which obviously required some extra muscle. By the time filming began, Hemsworth had transformed his physique, packing on about 20lbs of muscle.

Even then, Hemsworth had his doubts about the potential success of Marvel's prospected Avengers plan.

"When we shot the first film, I was aware of what it was but had no idea if anyone was going to turn up and see it, let alone then do The Avengers or then do a second Thor or a third Thor or a third, fourth and fifth Avengers. You hope and dream that it’s going to be that, but each time I’m like ‘it’s going to work, someone turned up, I’m still employed. There’s another job.'"

Needless to say, it all worked out pretty well for the once-hesitant Hemsworth. Thor was a huge hit, raking in almost $500 million, while the sequel, Thor: Dark World, performed even better at the box office, earning well over $600 million two years later.