Christian Bale Had An Easier Time Playing A Villain In Thor: Love And Thunder Than Playing A Superhero

It's already unbelievable enough that we live in a world where Christian Bale, of all actors, ended up accepting the role of Bruce Wayne for an entire trilogy of movies. (Maybe don't ask him about that newest "The Batman" movie just yet, though.) Then, the internet didn't quite know what to do with itself once the "3:10 to Yuma," "The Dark Knight," and "Ford v Ferrari" star made his shocking return to the comic book world with "Thor: Love and Thunder," of all movies. On top of it all, add in the fact that he's playing a villain called Gorr the God Butcher, of all characters and, well, maybe the conspiracy theorists who believe we're living in a simulation might be onto something.

In short, Bale has had plenty of experience over his acclaimed career in playing both heroes — it's hard to top Batman and John Connor — and villains, as shown memorably in "American Psycho" and "Vice." When it came time to suit up as the big bad for this fourth "Thor" movie, writer/director Taika Waititi and Bale ensured that this antagonist would stand out from the rest of the MCU. Given how much the actor tends to embrace challenging roles, could his performance in this Marvel movie somehow end up topping his work in Christopher Nolan's "The Dark Knight" movies?

The jury is out on that count, at least until we get to see "Thor: Love and Thunder" for ourselves, but Bale recently provided a rather interesting answer as to whether he had an easier time playing a hero or a villain. As far as Bale is concerned, it's good to be bad.

'There's a great pleasure in playing a villain'

With "Thor: Love and Thunder" fast approaching, Marvel recently held a press conference in which the stars all took turns raising anticipation for the upcoming superhero movie even more. Of course, the novelty of Christian Bale crossing over to the other side of aisle after his stint as DC's flagship character was always bound to attract eyeballs, but what about the actor's motivations for adding his star power to such a film? As it turns out, Bale relished the opportunity to play the baddie.

"There's a great pleasure in playing a villain. It's a lot easier to play a villain than it is to play a hero — Chris [Hemsworth] had a much tougher job. You know, everyone is fascinated with bad guys, immediately. And then and then and then the beauty of it is that Taika can make it bloody hilarious, and then really moving as well in their story. And then you know, other stuff. It's pushing it too much to say sympathy. But certainly, you sort of understand maybe why this guy is making awful decisions, you know, and he is a monster and he is a butcher, but is possibly a little understanding of why he came to be that way."

Though it's easy to take these comments as Bale simply toeing the company line, perhaps the chance to play a more complex and well-written villain truly did appeal to him this time around (along with, you know, dump trucks full of money). It certainly sounds like he and Waititi had a blast on set together, in any case.

"Thor: Love and Thunder" comes to theaters on July 8, 2022.