Thor: Ragnarok's Tessa Thompson Thinks the MCU's Phase 4 Will Embrace Diversity

Following MCU star Anthony Mackie’s criticism of Marvel movies for lack of diversity, and his desire to use his status as the co-lead of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier to push for more diverse representation on Marvel Studios’ projects, Tessa Thompson, who will reprise her role as Valkyrie in Thor: Love and Thunder, thinks that Phase 4 will more fully embrace those ideals.As part of Variety’s Actors on Actors series, Thompson and Ramy’s Ramy Youssef spoke about the topic and why it’s so important to the fandom at large. “I think in this next phase of Marvel, we’re really talking about what representation looks like in those spaces,” Thompson explained. “Because the truth is these movies travel globally in such huge ways and if you can represent people that are of color, if you can represent people with disabilities, if you can represent the LGBTQIA community inside of these films, it’s a pretty big deal.”

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“There’s millions and millions of people, particularly young people, that show up to the cinema,” Thompson continued. “And I think if you can show them something that looks like them, they feel valued. Particularly inside of these narratives of the comic books, that’s what it’s all about. It’s that our differences make us special.”

“I’m really excited that we’re able to continue to push the bounds of that and that I’m able to do that with Valkyrie, because there’s so many cool queer characters in the comic books and they should have a place on-screen.”

Since the onset of COVID-19, the MCU’s Phase 4 schedule has been reshuffled a few times. The latest iteration has Thor: Love and Thunder opening February 11, 2022. Ragnarok director Taika Waititi will return for the film and has promised to “double down” on the craziness.

Thor: Love and Thunder will feature Natalie Portman’s Jane Foster as Thor and Christian Bale as a yet-to-be-revealed villain.

Matt Fowler is a writer for IGN and a member of the Television Critics Association. Follow him on Twitter at @TheMattFowler and Facebook at Facebook.com/MattBFowler.


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