When you think of the upcoming Thor movie from Marvel, the first director that comes to mind is probably not someone best known for his Shakespeare adaptations, right? But that's exactly who might end up with the job, since Kenneth Branagh is in talks to direct the movie. Not that Shakespeare can't be a big-old action film (after all, Branagh's own Henry V was plenty action-packed and bloody) and big-old action films can't be Shakespearean. But it's not the first thing that comes to mind when you think of part of the Avengers, of which Iron Man is a part. And Iron Man is awesome and everything, but definitely not Shakespearean. He's too futuristic, and he's a superhero in a suit and all of that. Not exactly Shakespeare's specialty.
the other hand, Thor's based on a Norse God, which means it's all steeped in history of epic proportions, which might just mean Branagh's the perfect choice to direct this. If we're talking about high-calibre filmmaking, we know Branagh's the right guy for the job. It's so interesting (and exciting) that Marvel wants to take these fairly arthouse film directors (first Jon Favreau for Iron Man, and now this) and put them on these huge projects. I hope this trend continues, so that we can get many more interesting superhero films rather than the same stuff that's been churned out assembly line style by Hollywood guys for years and years. [I can see it now: "Merchant & Ivory present... War Machine!" - Zach]