Chris Hemsworth for “Thor”

Aussie actor Chris Hemsworth was all smiles as he greeted the masses for the first time since taking hold of Thor’s mighty hammer. The actor sat with press at Comic-Con to discuss his big time introduction to American audiences.

Ironically, Hemsworth battled his own brother for the Thor role. “I was like, ‘Listen, I’m the older brother. You shut up and turn it down!'” the actor joked with press. “No, I’d auditioned and it didn’t go any further and then next I heard [Liam] was being flown over from Australia to test and I was like, ‘What?’ As excited as I was, I was secretly angry.’ But no, we’re very close.”

Hemsworth offered press an introduction to the character in Kenneth Branagh’s new take: “At the beginning of this film, he’s a brash, cocky warrior. He’s about to inherit the keys to the kingdom. And his father thinks he’s not ready. It’s the journey of him learning some humility through the film. His heart’s in the right place. I think he’s doing what he’s doing for his family and protecting the kingdom and he thinks it’s the right way to do it. It just happens to be a very aggressive way of doing it, which probably isn’t the right way. It’s about sort of tempering that sort of raw emotion he drives off of most of the time into the right direction.”

The actor says working with Hopkins, who plays Odin, was an intimidating experience at times, but also a terrific learning experience. “Working with Hopkins, every day is a blessing,” says Hemsworth. “The guy is incredibly humble and obviously talented. We were doing this one scene having a big argument, basically. It was all going along and he was doing it one way and then Ken [Branagh] came up and whispered something in his ear and then, Bam! We started doing the take. It was powerful. Then he yelled cut and some people were crying and I remember sitting there thinking, ‘That was amazing and I suck.'” (Laughs)

Recent reports surfaced claiming problems on set, particularly between Hemsworth and Hopkins. But the young actor says nothing could be further from the truth. “We had a good laugh about it. Anthony rang me up and just talked about the ridiculousness of it. That article said a lot of funny things, like the amount of blue screen we were doing, which we weren’t. It talked about Anthony hating working in Santa Fe and he wasn’t in Santa Fe. It talked about him hating [Branagh] and not agreeing and Anthony had said to me multiple times how Ken was one of the best directors he’s ever worked with. So yeah, you’ve gotta laugh at it.”

Just prior to our interview, Hemsworth joined his Avenger cast-mates on stage for a surprise preview of the cast behind Joss Whedon’s wildly ambitious project. “That was crazy,” says Hemsworth. “I didn’t even know that was going to happen. I didn’t know Scarlett or Robert or any of those guys were coming. Those are people I’ve admired and been inspired by for years and I’m up there standing on the stage with them going, ‘What am I doing? Do I belong here?’ It was great. I really look forward to working with those guys and learning from them.”

Just before Hemsworth finished up the interview, one loyal fan yelled out, “Chris, do we get to see Thor cross the rainbow bridge in this?” Hemsworth flashed his winning smile and responded, “We do, yeah.”