Posted on Thursday, November 7th, 2013 by Germain Lussier
If one were to believe all the negative buzz during production on Thor: The Dark World, you’d assume the film is a disaster. It’s not. In fact, it’s pretty fantastic and a shining example of how things many laymen think of as huge red flags — such as reshoots and rewrites — can actually be used to drastically improve a film.
During production, several rumors came out about the making of the Thor sequel. In the coming days, we’ll give you the scoop on all of them. First up, much was made over the fact that director Alan Taylor went back to add more scenes with Tom Hiddleston‘s Loki. That’s true and, below, we’ll tell you which scenes were added. Second, Taylor mentioned how Avengers director Joss Whedon was brought in to help with a few scenes and we can tell you which scenes he rewrote.
Read the answers, which are spoiler-free, below.
First up, I asked Taylor about the reshoots and while he was very clear to say they were not “reshoots,” but “additional photography,” he gave some insight into the Marvel process:
It’s my experience with the Marvel process they save a portion of the budget for this and what we were basically doing. A lot of it was getting more Loki stuff, because we realized how successful he was in the movie, so we sort of “Loki-ed it up” a little bit.
So what scenes specifically?
Well there’s a scene that we probably shouldn’t identify too much, that’s one of the funniest scenes in the movie where Loki’s a shapeshifter. That was a very, very late addition. And there’s a connective thing at the beginning that bridges from The Avengers story to sort of explain how Loki is in prison or why he is in prison. That was a very, very late addition. That was probably “more Loki is a good thing,” but also we decided it was an expositional link that was needed for the audience. So those are two examples of Loki stuff.
After the prologue, that bridge scene is the first scene in the movie. You see Loki before you see Thor.
Taylor also spoke up about the Whedon thing and how it’s a normal part of the Marvel process:
Also, with the Marvel process, at least with my experience with this one, is the script is in flux not up until you shoot; it’s in flux while you are shooting. I got into trouble for saying Joss Whedon had come in and rewritten some scenes we were shooting and I stand by it, it was great. He came in. He’s a genius. He fixed the scene and left, but the rewriting process continues through post as far as they were concerned. That takes some getting used to. It wasn’t a negative process, it was just a different process. Coming from TV, the writer is god, and you have a script and that’s what you do. In this one the script is like the last thing. I think we worked out the script right before we locked picture.
So, again, which scenes did Whedon write?
The thing he was brought in to help with was not a comedy scene, it was an emotional scene between Thor and Jane. I think he also did a pass with one of my favorite scenes, Thor and Loki talking in the Asgardian skiff at night when the brothers actually have time together to talk. That was one of my favorite scenes and I think he had a pass on that.
Later, I asked Tom Hiddleston about the additions and he both confirmed Taylor’s examples were the only two, and spoke about shooting them:
[The bridge scene and morphing] were the only scenes [added], yeah. What does it do, adding scenes? It’s interesting, because I had actually always wanted there to be that scene with Odin. I remember saying when I first got the draft of the script, “Shouldn’t he have a scene with Odin where you see them lock horns one more time?” So I was very glad to do that and I think it makes more sense of the references to Odin all the way through the film.
And the morphing scene was just so fun. It was just adding more mischief, more playfulness to the character. His charm is so much of the character and is a facet I love to play. I suppose the challenge of adding stuff later is just trying to capture the same psychological and emotional continuity, because there were many months between… Of course when you’re shooting, that’s when you’re focused solely on that particular job and then once you wrap you go off and get distracted by other things, other projects in your life. So it’s having the discipline to shift back into the right gear, but it was worth it.
So, when you see Thor: The Dark World later this week, those are three particular scenes to be on the look out for. The first scene after the title, which is a bridge from The Avengers. That was a late addition. A Loki morphing scene, also a late addition with a Whedon touch. And an emotional scene on a skiff between Loki and Thor, which Whedon wrote.