A familiar name could be back to direct Thor: Ragnarok

Who might be getting behind the camera for Thor's third solo film adventure? The first possible candidate we've heard about may surprise you.

In a recent appearance on the Popcorn Talk network (via Screencrush), Heroic Hollywood's Umberto Gonzalez revealed this little bit of intel:

I was hearing that Marvel wanted Kenneth Branagh back for Thor 3. But, he just got an offer to direct Murder on the Orient Express at Fox. So, I don’t know if it is going to happen or not. They’re thinking about bringing him back into the fold.

Of course, Branagh directed the first Thor in 2010, making way for Alan Taylor (Terminator: Genisys) to call the shots on 2013's Thor: The Dark World. By all accounts, Branagh was said to have had a good experience with the folks at Marvel, and he's certainly popular at parent company Disney for delivering a huge hit with Cinderella earlier this year.

However, the news about Branagh directing Murder on the Orient Express was just announced last week, so it's not clear if that would conflict with him possibly returning for Thor: Ragnarok. We don't know if he would even want to take a second trip to Asgard at this point.

Although they've done well at the box office, neither Thor film has scored especially well with fans, nor does either one of them usually show up near the top of the list when people rank Marvel's films. In the first one, Branagh did a terrific job establishing Asgard and particularly the relationship among Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and Odin (Anthony Hopkins), but the Earthbound scenes failed to catch fire. Thor: The Dark World was hampered by a weak villain (Christopher Eccleston's Malekith) and a mediocre script.

Marvel head Kevin Feige has hinted that Thor: Ragnarok is going to feature major implications, not just for the God of Thunder himself but for the Marvel Cinematic Universe as a whole -- we suspect Thanos might play a larger role in the film -- so Marvel would be wise to get the right director on board. Is that person Kenneth Branagh, or should the studio go for some fresh blood?

Thor: Ragnarok is due for release on Nov. 3, 2017.

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