Dewey Nicks and Krista Smith spotlight Hollywoodâ€™s latest Aussie imports, Chris and Liam Hemsworth.
Hemsworth may not be a household surname in Hollywood, let alone elsewhere, but expect that to change, and soon. Actor brothers Chris, 26, and Liam, 19, were raised in southern Australia, and grew up fighting like bear cubs. With age theyâ€™ve become best friends, though that hasnâ€™t stopped them from maintaining a healthy competition across parallel trajectories as rising young stars. After toiling on the Aussie soap opera Home and Away (where Heath Ledger also earned his stripes), Chris got his first American break when he was cast as Captain Kirkâ€™s doomed father in J. J. Abramsâ€™s Star Trek reboot. Chris has followed that brief but memorable role with the lead in the upcoming remake of Red Dawn, the Reagan-era action movie about kids taking on Soviet invaders. Meanwhile, Liam, who had been laying floors back home, landed a screen test for the title roleâ€”complete with winged helmetâ€”in Marvel Studiosâ€™ coming Thor franchise hopeful, to be directed by Kenneth Branagh for summer 2011. The part ultimately went to Chris. But Liam, who followed his brother to California last March, quickly rebounded and will soon be seen as a romantic lead opposite Miley Cyrus in The Last Song, from a predictably tear-jerking screenplay by Nicholas Sparks (The Notebook). We look forward to seeing how this friendly sibling rivalry plays out as the brothers Hemsworth near Hollywoodâ€™s summit.
Last spring’s “Thor” casting contest conjured more rumors than most fans could shake an Uru hammer at, so when the storm had finally settled to reveal Chris Hemsworth as the son of Odin, many reserved judgmentâ€”that is, until they saw him lead a starship as Captain George Kirk.
While his heroic role fetched plenty of fan support, Hemsworth’s biggest booster to date may just be his former “Star Trek” director J.J. Abrams, who had nothing but great things to say about the actor’s Starfleet performance.
“Itâ€™s very exciting. We really lucked out,” Abrams told MTV News in an exclusive interview ahead of the “Star Trek” DVD/Blu-Ray release next month. “Heâ€™s so crazy handsome and heâ€™s so strapping with the classic leading man look. I sort of wish I had dirtied him up a little bit, messed his hair up a little bit.”
“The guyâ€™s hair up until the last moment is sort of perfect. In retrospect I look at that and am like a little smudge or a hair out of place would have been a good thing,” he said. “The guy is a sweetheart and terrific actor.”
According to Abrams, the last time he had a chance to chat with Hemsworth was prior to his “Thor” announcement, but he knew the actor was destined for big things.
“[Hemsworth] was in a moment where he was trying to figure out what his next thing was going to be and he stayed strong in terms of what his commitments were to various projects. I knew that he was going to be given a lot of opportunities sooner or later and I was hoping it would be off of Trek,” said Abrams.
Abrams’ intuition seems to be right on target thus far, especially considering Hemsworth’s projected “Thor” followup as one of “The Avengers.”
Fans will have to wait until 2011 and 2012 to find out for sure, which ought to give Hemsworth plenty of time to smudge his face like a warrior born.
Milla Jovovich has described her A Perfect Getaway co-star Chris Hemsworth as “the next big thing”.
Jovovich lines up with the Australian actor, who briefly appeared in this summer’s Star Trek and will lead the cast of Kenneth Branagh’s Thor, in this week’s thriller about couples being stalked by killers while on holiday.
Speaking to DS, Jovovich said that she already sees Hemsworth as a star in the making.
“Chris is amazing,” she said. “I was so happy they hired him, he’s really such a star in my head. He’s going to do so well. As soon as I saw him I said to the director, ‘Good choice, man!’
“He is the next big thing, a really great guy, very smart. He’s Australian and did a great American accent in this movie, he’s a very talented actor.”
Chris Hemsworth is virtually unknown in the United States, but his popularity is bound to explode over the next few years.
Hemsworth, 26, was born in Melbourne, Australia. He starred in the Australian soap opera Home and Away as Kim Hyde before landing a role in J.J. Abramsâ€™ Star Trek as George Kirk, the father of Captain James T. Kirk (played by Chris Pine).
Although he was only in the movie for about ten minutes, Star Trek proved to be a lucrative career move for the actor.
He stars alongside Mila Jovovich, Steve Zahn, Timothy Olyphant, and Marley Shelton in A Perfect Getaway, opening in theaters today. The film is about a couple on vacation who discover that someone is stalking and murdering tourists.
Hemsworth has also signed on to star in the Joss Whedon-penned thriller Cabin in the Woods and a remake of the 1984 classic Red Dawn.
Hemsworthâ€™s biggest role will come in May of 2011, when he stars in the Kenneth Brannagh-directed movie adaptation of the Marvel comic Thor. Hemsworth will play Thor, the hammer-wielding Norse god of thunder himself. Natalie Portman is starring in the movie as Jane Foster, Thorâ€™s love interest. Also rumored to star are Jessica Biel and Samuel L. Jackson. After Thor, Hemsworth will go on to star in The Avengers alongside Robert Downey Jr. and Edward Norton. Not too shabby for someone whose a newcomer to the Hollywood scene.
Expect to see a lot more of Chris Hemsworth over the next couple of years. It wonâ€™t be long before he graces the pages of GQ like his former co-star and movie son, Chris Pine.
See A Perfect Getaway, out in theaters today.
THR: You cast a relative unknown as the lead in “Thor.” Will that be the Marvel casting strategy?
Feige: I think the Marvel way is casting the best actor for the part. It can be somebody relatively new, but it can also be someone like Robert Downey Jr., who you wouldn’t necessarily call an unknown. Chris Hemsworth came by the (“Iron Man 2”) set a few weeks ago. There was nobody around, but it was the historic meeting of Thor and Tony Stark. Within a few minutes, the crew was whispering, “There’s Thor.” Some of them had worked on “Star Trek,” so they knew who he was, but you could feel the buzz. He was wearing a T-shirt, but he was an imposing presence on the set.
Hollywood Reporter (click to read the full interview)
If Star Trek writers Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman were given the opportunity of another shot with Chris Hemsworth who played Kirk’s father in the new Star Trek incarnation, Kurtzman said, “As long as he plays the part, there could be an entire ‘Star Trek’ movie devoted to the heroic adventures of George Kirk.”
So what makes this young Australian actor so lovable and in demand? He came out of nowhere and has managed to land some major roles including Kirk’s father, the lead in THOR, Jed (previously played by Patrick Swayze) in the Red Dawn remake and more.
Marvel President Kevin Feige thinks he knows the answer, “As new actors make their way into feature films, it is a rare thing to find someone who is not only immensely watchable and engaging, but can also represent a timeless and key character from the Marvel universe in such a compelling way. We have been watching Chris hone his craft over the last several months and due to his persistence and talent he rose above everyone else embodying the actor we were looking for.”
We saw him briefly in the first 10 minutes of Star Trek in May, we’ll have to wait quite a while for THOR, not scheduled to open until 2011.
He’s one to keep an eye on, LA Times included him in their Calendar section as one of the top 10 rising names in Hollywood.
Australian hunk Chris Hemsworth, 25, had to go up against his younger brother Liam for the part of Thor.
Hemsworth has caused an industry stir by scoring roles in two blockbusters, the upcoming Thor (a.k.a The Mighty Thor) and Star Trek, where he played Captain Kirkâ€™s father.
Hemsworthâ€™s appearances in local TV series Home and Away were still being recorded as recently as this year. The series has been a launch pad into Hollywood for several Australians.
The Thor role, however, only came after James Bond star Daniel Craig, pictured, knocked it back.
Another Hemsworth brother, Luke, is also an actor, known in Australia for such TV drama series as Neighbours and All Saints.
Chris Hemsworth moved to Los Angeles just two years ago and was reported to be living in the guesthouse of his Hollywood agent, William Ward.
Marvel Studios recently announced that 25-year-old Chris Hemsworth will play the hammer-wielding Norse god Thor in director Kenneth Branagh’s upcoming comic book adaptation Thor, set to be released in 2011. The blue-eyed actor definitely has all the looks to play the hunky god of thunder, but here’s where you know him from and other things you should know about this Australian heartthrob.
1. He plays Chris Pine’s dad in Star Trek
He’s three years younger than Pine, who plays Capt. James T. Kirk, but Hemsworth captivated audiences in his small but memorable role as James’s father, George Kirk, in the latest remake of Star Trek.
2. He’s a former soap star
Hemsworth’s big acting break came when he played the high school principal’s son, Kim Hyde, in the popular Australian soap opera Home and Away. That set is where he met Isabel Lucas, 24 â€“ his character’s love interest who eventually became his real-life girlfriend. But no worries ladies, he’s back on the market. In April he told the hosts of Australia’s The Morning Show, “I’m single at the moment.”
3. He competed in Australia’s Dancing with the Stars
In 2005, he appeared on the fifth season of Australia’s DWTS with dancing partner Abbey Ross. Unfortunately, he and Ross failed to take home the trophy, and were the sixth couple eliminated.
4. He’s stepping into Patrick Swayze’s shoes
Hemsworth will take on the lead role of Jed Eckert, originally played by Swayze in 1984, in the remake of the war film Red Dawn.
5. His brother is Miley Cyrus’s future love interest
Acting evidently runs in the Hemsworth family. Chris’s younger brother, Liam, will star opposite Cyrus in the upcoming film adaptation of Nicholas Sparks’s novel The Last Song. His older brother Luke is also an actor.
Former Home and Away star Chris Hemsworth has learned quickly the up-and-down nature of work in Hollywood.
Hemsworth, who stars in the new Star Trek film alongside Eric Bana, was suddenly hot stuff when he arrived in LA two years ago.
“When I first arrived in LA, I shot three films in the first year,” he told GQ magazine.
“Then I had nothing for seven months.
“I started learning muay thai (kickboxing) and it was great – my trainer has become like my Yoda.”
Despite landing a key role as Captain Kirk’s father George in one of the year’s most anticipated releases, Hemsworth said he was not a sci-fi fanatic.
“I’m fully aware of what Star Trek means to its dedicated fans,” he said.
“I’ve always appreciated the TV series, but I have never been to a fan convention or anything.”
The Phillip Island lad said his biggest indulgence was surfboards.
“I constantly convince myself I need new boards,” he said. “It’s not too bad as a weakness, I guess; after all, it could be drugs.”