Sure, when it was announced that "Swingers" director Jon Favreau would be getting behind the camera for "Iron Man," it came as a bit of a surprise. "Rocketeer" director Joe Johnston for "Captain America"? Okay, that makes sense. Joss Whedon for "The Avengers"? Another surprise — but a pleasant one, for sure.
But for many fans of comics and comic book movies, all those surprises put together still didn't match up to the shock of finding out that Shakespearean veteran Kenneth Branagh would direct "Thor" — a big-screen, live-action film about Marvel's god of thunder. So how did he land the gig? Marvel Studios chief Kevin Feige explained the course of events to MTV News.
"He chased it pretty hard," said Feige. "We had a number of good meetings, he flew himself over to meet with me, [and] we had a number of phone calls, a number of sessions — more meetings than I’ve had ever had with a director before we’d brought them on."
Feige went on to list the qualifications that made Branagh the right man for the job when it came to bringing Thor to theaters.
"He’s a big, giant Thor fan," explained Feige. "He clearly is a very literate guy when it comes to Shakespeare and when it comes to almost anything, including Marvel’s Thor, which was a surprise to us."
"Also, just talking about movies, we love the same kind of movies, we love the same kind of things and when you have someone who’s as talented as Ken is in one arena and bring him into another one, he is going to succeed," continued Feige. "We have the department heads, we have the great resources to help him what he brings to us is bringing our characters to life in a big way."