[Ed. note: The following contains minor spoilers for Loki episode 2, “The Variant.”]
For the new Marvel Cinematic Universe series Loki, Tom Hiddleston had to do something very unusual for an actor: rewind his signature character for about 10 years. Loki Use Time Travel Shenanigan to separate Asgard’s god from 2012 action the Avengers And to a new adventure. This means that the characters in the show’s version haven’t experienced all the trauma and serious character changes they’ve experienced in the course of the Marvel movie over the last nine years.
And Hiddleston is then enjoying hell.
“It’s really interesting that we need to unleash the evolution of our characters. Thor: Dark World, Thor: Ragnarok,and Avengers: Infinity War“He tells Polygon. “In a strange way, it was like time travel in itself. I thought it was a rare privilege as an actor to go back to the character I played 10 years ago and resume from where I left off. But at the same time. It’s fascinating, because I have a very realistic memory of what this Loki didn’t do. It was a strange process. “But I know this! ” it was cool. It was a really cool way and it was unusual. “
He is also pleased to have enough body shape to wear the old Loki outfit. “And you can go back and put on the costume again. It still fits so I’m very relieved,” he says. “I think it could have gone the other way.”
For Hiddleston, the series represents an opportunity to rethink his performance as Loki. This is because the way the show is centered around his character means that he has more emotional demands than usual.
“I felt like I did some things in this series that I hadn’t done before, like Loki,” says Hiddleston. “And I really really really enjoyed doing them. I think growth is a human need. We noticed repeatedly and thought,” Oh, it’s useless anymore, so I don’t want to do it anymore. ” And if you’re lucky, you’re about to evolve. And it was exciting to be able to evolve Loki in some way and make different choices to do new things. I don’t want to be too spoiled, but there are many around the corner. “
Part of that evolution came from the sequence of episode 2 “The Variant” of the show. Loki faces a series of civilians owned by Loki on another timeline. That said, Hiddleston had to share the screen with multiple actors trying to imitate him. Movements and facial expressions that try to reflect his past Loki performances. He says the experience was particularly surreal, as he hadn’t pre-worked on rehearsals with actors or Loki’s performances.
“There was no formal sit-in with them,” he says. “But it was a lot of fun to see the features identified in Loki. Can you trust his playfulness, mischief, charm, as well as his slight edge?’ And his unique charismatic Persuasive — It was really thrilling to me because seeing them living in different actors wasn’t exactly the same, but it’s the same, but it’s not! “
Playing against other Loki gave him the opportunity to see how others would interpret his performance. “It was a lot of fun to see how dramatic he was,” says Hiddleston. “It’s very hard not to know that when you’re in front of Loki. His energy tends to fill the room. It was really, really fun.”
One of the most prominent features of Loki Loki, Both when Hiddleston plays him and when others take on him, he has an increasingly tingling smile, trying to use it to hide frustration and resentment, and come across as being kind to the enemy. .. Hiddleston says smiles are an important part of Loki in any timeline or interpretation.
“I always thought, trying to create a kind of integrated psychological reality for the character.” Loki: Naughty God. Naughty: a playful tendency, “says Hiddleston. “It’s what’s inside him, but it’s also a mask. He’s also a makeover. So a smile is a kind of defense, as much as an armor suit, or as much as an outside action.
“I think it will change — sometimes smiles are sincere, he spends the time of his life, and at other times he breathes almost internal frustration and smoothes it. I’m trying to find a way to do it. “
So far, the series seems to be asking clearly who Loki is — whether he can be a hero rather than a villain, whether he has his own moral compass. .. And it’s unclear if the series will have time to reach a conclusion. “They are big questions,” says Hiddleston. “Can we be something or someone else by moving away from ourselves? I think it will take a long time for those questions to be answered by everyone. But I liked to try. ”