As Freud once said, “Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.” And, it turns out, sometimes an Instagram of a Marvel director holding Thor’s hammer is just that, and not a clue that Thor is going to pop up in Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2. Director James Gunn took to Facebook to clarify that Thor won’t be appearing in the sequel to his 2014 space comedy despite that fact that he took a photo with Thor’s hammer Mjolnir (a.k.a. “mew mew”). In sharing an album of behind-the-scenes photos from the set, Gunn noted:
No, Thor isn’t in Vol. 2 - the props guy just happened to have it around and I decided to take a pic with it. Not sure if I’m able to lift it because I’m worthy or because I’m soulless like an elevator.
Here’s the photo that started the rumor mill:
Of course, given that studios have made a habit of lying to protect big twists and reveals, this doesn’t 100 percent confirm that Thor isn’t in the movie. On the other hand, posing for a picture with Thor’s hammer would be a pretty dumb thing to do if Thor actually were in the movie and Gunn were trying to keep it a secret. So it seems far more likely Gunn is telling the truth and that when given the chance to pose with Mjolnir, he simply did what any true nerd would do and grabbed the hammer by the handle.
For the record, Gunn is adamant that no Avengers will be appearing in Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2:
However, that doesn’t rule out a quick cameo from a non-Avenger character. Like, say, unexpected Marvel darling Stellan Skarsgård who, believe it or not, has appeared in the same number of MCU movies as Thor himself. So perhaps the hammer is actually a clue to Skarsgård’s involvement, not Chris Hemsworth’s. We’ll know for sure when Guardians Vol. 2 hits theaters in May 2017 and/or when Gunn posts another Facebook update clarifying that Erik Selvig isn’t Peter Quill’s dad. (Or is he?!?)