The MCU's villains and key side characters, on the other hand, have consistently been of an extremely high quality. Starting with Jeff Bridges in the very first Iron Man, through to Jeff Goldblum and Cate Blanchett in Thor: Ragnarok, Michael B. Jordan in Black Panther, and even Josh Brolin and Jake Gyllenhaal in Avengers: Endgame and Spider-Man: Far From Home this year, Kevin Feige has done a great job consistently wrangling great talent to appear alongside those heroes.
So, when Taika Waititi, who directed Ragnarok and will return to direct 2021's Thor: Love and Thunder, was spotted having lunch with Ryan Gosling—yes, Ryan Gosling of The Notebook, La La Land, The Big Short, and so on—people took notice.
Obviously, as the JustJared tweet above seems to suggest, it looks like Gosling and Waititi could have been meeting for some sort of Thor role. The movie is already star-studded, as we know that Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson will be reprising their Ragnarok roles, and that Natalie Portman will be returning to the franchise to play the female Thor. But those are all good guys.
In the past, Gosling supposedly met with Doctor Strange director Scott Derrickson to discuss that movie's titular role at a time when Benedict Cumberbatch's casting was in danger. Of course, we know how that one turned out. Gosling, in general, doesn't seem too into the idea of appearing in superhero movies—his reaction to being asked about playing Batman says it all.
But if he were to play a villain—something he's never really done in his career before—that could be a chance to once again show his talent to a massive audience, and do so in a role that's probably going to end up being a one-and-done situation. After seeing the way B. Jordan, Brolin, and Gyllenhaal shined in their MCU turns, maybe Gosling has decided that he's seen the light, and wants a brief way into this world.
That being said, the day the two were spotted meeting was also Waititi's 44th birthday. Could this simply be two pals having a birthday lunch? They've never worked together on a movie before, and don't seem to have any public friendship, but it's not out of the realm of possibility. Waititi is also directing an adaption of a documentary calledNext Goal Wins before Love and Thunder, but granted the fact that that story centres on Samoan soccer players, well, it doesn't seem like a natural fit for Gosling.
Obviously, this is complete speculation. But as the saying goes, a picture tells a thousand words. Gosling and Waititi are definitely meeting, and they're definitely talking about something. Could it be how Gosling is going to torment Hemsworth, Thompson, and Portman? Could it be about how good the restaurant's lobster bisque is? Could it be both? The answer, really, is anyone's guess.
This article originally appeared on Men's Health