A decade into playing Loki, Tom Hiddleston is ready for him to be the star.
In a new interview, the actor discussed bringing his God of Mischief out of the movies and into his own weekly Disney+ series as he wants to honor the character’s legacy.
Hiddleston is the first to note the irony that when he tried out for Thor in 2009, it was actually to play the Thunder God himself. But the producers saw something in the part that lent itself to playing Thor’s conniving brother.
While starting out a pure villain in that film and in Avengers, Hiddleston shifted Loki to an almost sympathetic figure, although still his selfish and power-hungry nature. Yet he was willing to aid Thor in defending Asgard in Thor: Ragnarok.
Hiddleston assumed Loki’s journey ended when Thanos shockingly killed him in the opening scene of Avengers: Infinity War. This led to what was supposed to be a cameo as the Loki of the past in Endgame.
But in a big twist, Loki ends up grabbing the Tesseract and then escaping into the past. This sets up the series as Loki is captured by the Time Variance Authority, who want him to be their agent fixing messes in history.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Hiddleston stated the fun is watching Loki’s mix of chaos and control clash with the TVA.
That was very exciting because in the other films, there was always something about Loki that was very controlled. He seemed to know exactly what the cards in his hand were and how he was going to play them…. And Loki versus the TVA is Loki out of control immediately, and in an environment in which he’s completely behind the pace, out of his comfort zone, destabilized, and acting out.”
Going to school
Most of the series cast is made up of newcomers to the MCU such as Owen Wilson as TVA boss Mobius and Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Ravonna.
This pushed Hiddleston to set up what director Kate Herron called a “Loki School” to bring the newbies up to speed. “I asked him to basically talk through his 10 years of the MCU — from costumes to stunts, to emotionally how he felt in each movie. It was fantastic.”
Hiddleston stated that a key to it all was keeping to Loki’s nature as, no matter how charming he is, there’s still that conniving side that makes him nearly impossible to trust.
“I love this idea [of] Loki’s chaotic energy somehow being something we need. Even though, for all sorts of reasons, you don’t know whether you can trust him. You don’t know whether he’s going to betray you. You don’t why he’s doing what he’s doing, If he’s shapeshifting so often, does he even know who he is? And is he even interested in understanding who he is?
Underneath all those masks, underneath the charm and the wit, which is kind of a defense anyway, does Loki have an authentic self? Is he introspective enough or brave enough to find out? I think all of those ideas are all in the series — ideas about identity, ideas about self-knowledge, self-acceptance, and the difficulty of it.”
As with any MCU project, the producers are tight-lipped on just what is going to happen on the show. Promotional images indicate Loki will try to run for President of the United States and visit various alternate timelines.
There’s also rumors that the series might introduce major time-traveling Marvel villain Kang the Conqueror.
Hiddleston is, naturally, not giving out any secrets but does indicate he’d be willing to play the role for another decade.
“I’m open to everything. I have said goodbye to the character. I’ve said hello to the character. I said goodbye to the character [again]. I’ve learned not to make assumptions, I suppose. I’m just grateful that I’m still here, and there are still new roads to explore. I just want to make sure I’ve honored that responsibility with the best that I can give and the most care and thought and energy.”
Ten years after he debuted in the MCU, the one true thing about Loki is how Hiddleston never stops having fans guessing what the character does next.
Loki debuts on Disney+ June 9.