Russell Crowe Makes His MCU Debut With Thor Love and Thunder: How Does His Character Zeus Panhellenios Fit Into Chris Hemsworth’s Movie?

New Zealand-Australian actor Russel Crowe has been confirmed to star in the upcoming Marvel Cinematic Universe movie Thor: Love and Thunder. This will be the actor’s first MCU project. He was previously part of the DC Extended Universe with Zack Snyder’s 2013 film Man of Steel, in which he played the role of Jor-El, the biological father of Kal-El or Superman (Henry Cavill).

Crowe, who celebrates his birthday today, is an Oscar-winning actor, who received the trophy for his performance as Maximus Decimus Meridius in Ridley Scott’s epic historical film The Gladiator

In Love and Thunder, which is the fourth film in the franchise, Crowe’s role was probably meant to be secret. But he kept saying he was none other than Zeus in the Taika Waititi movie, Marvel’s version of the god of sky and thunder and the top deity of the Greek pantheon. He was also the ruler of Mount Olympus, the abode of the gods or Olympians, who were the successors of the earlier Titans.

Who is Zeus in the Marvel Universe?

Zeus in Marvel Comics.

Zeus in Greek Mythology and in Marvel Comics are slightly different, though their stories are nearly identical with a few minor changes. For the ancient Greeks, Zeus, as mentioned above, was the supreme god and ruler of Olympus, similar to Thor in Norse mythology and Indra in Hinduism with his lightning powers. In Marvel Comics, he is a powerful humanoid called Zeus Panhellenios, who inhabits and rules the pocket dimension of Olympus.

He and other inhabitants of the Olympians were revered by the ancient Greeks and Romans as gods, in the same way that the ancient Scandinavians worshiped Norse deities. The story of Zeus Panhellenios mirrors the Zeus of Greek myths. He was the eldest son of the youngest Titan, Cronos, who overthrew his father Ouranos (the sky god).

Ouranos prophesied that Cronus would meet a similar fate. To escape this fate, Cronus imprisoned his children in Tartarus, the underworld (in myths he ate his children) and the youngest was smuggled out of his grasp. Becoming Zeus, he freed his siblings and defeated his father, imprisoning him in Tartarus for eternity.

After Christianity arrived and ruled the western world, Zeus and other Olympians retreated to their pocket dimension, cutting ties with humans.

Zeus and the Olympians almost clashed with Odin and the Asgardians

Once in Marvel Comics, the Olympians and the Norse (or Asgardian) gods nearly came to blows when Zeus’ favorite son, Hercules, and his band of Greek warriors went to battle the Norsemen under the protection of Thor. This led to war, but an intervention and private meeting between Zeus and Odin ended hostilities and instead led to an alliance.

How does Zeus come into play in Love and Thunder?

Gorr the butcher god Gorr the God Butcher, the character that Christian Bale plays in Love and Thunder.

We don’t know for sure, but it must have something to do with Christian Bale’s main antagonist, Gorr the God Butcher, who has reason to hate gods of all shapes and sizes. Born on an unnamed planet, Gorr was a man with a deep belief in the gods. His parents died in childhood. He married and had children, but most of them died of starvation. His pregnant wife also died due to an earthquake.

He began to believe that there were no gods as not a single deity had answered his prayers. But then he realized it, and his quest became to get rid of every god in the universe. Perhaps Zeus and Thor will team up to defeat Gorr.

Meanwhile, Love and Thunder brings back Chris Hemsoworth as Thor and Natalie Portman as Jane Foster, the latter also wielding Mjolnir and taking on the mantle of Thor. Tessa Thompson will return as Valkyrie, who now leads the Asgardians. Matt Damon and Jeff Goldblum are also back after appearing in Thor Ragnarok. Guardians of the Galaxy cast members Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, and Karen Gillan will also reprise their MCU characters. Jeff Goldblum is also set to return as the Grand Master in Thor: Ragnarok.

Thor: Love and Thunder will be released on July 8.

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