We absolutely love Tom Hiddleston and we can’t overstate the importance of his work as Loki in the MCU. However, we’ve just watched his screen test to play the God of Mischief’s more heroic sibling, and we think we’ve discovered a limit to his acting powers. There is one after all.
Hiddleston joined the MCU in its earliest days when there was a much smaller line of A-listers waiting to play the biggest MCU characters. He screen-tested in a blond wig for the Thor cast‘s lead role, and it’s fair to say that they made the right call when they decided he should play one of the best Marvel villains instead.
Speaking on the DVD special features for Thor: The Dark World, co-producer Craig Kyle said: “At first, Tom was up for Thor. He trained, he came in, he was ripped. He was swinging the hammer in the rain. He did a tremendous job, but he wasn’t Thor. From the moment he came in and read, though, he was Loki.”
When you watch the clip, it’s impossible not to agree with Kyle. As brilliant as Hiddleston is, it just doesn’t feel right to see him wielding Mjolnir and wearing that wig. The goofy humor that made Thor Ragnarok one of the best movies Marvel has ever made simply wouldn’t have worked without Hemsworth.
That’s no shade on Hiddleston at all. In fact, the man himself agrees. He told Jimmy Fallon in 2019 that he spent three months embroiled in the Thor audition process. “The remit was, if you’re over six foot and you’ve got blond hair, you can come and have a pop at it,” he said. “I think we can all agree that they cast the right actor.”
Hiddleston might have ended up on the right end of things, though, as Loki has ultimately become arguably an even bigger asset to the MCU than his heroic brother. After all, Loki has led the best Marvel series on the small screen and could continue to play a big role in upcoming Marvel movies.
Hemsworth has indicated that he could say goodbye after the Thor 5 release date, but there’s every chance that Hiddleston still gets the call well into Marvel Phase 6 and beyond. He’s a long way from being just a villain at this point.
You can see Loki in action as both hero and villain if you follow our guide to the Marvel movies in order. Alternatively, read our Loki season 2 finale recap and learn why Loki isn’t actually the most powerful character in the MCU right now.