How can one walk out of Thor: Ragnarok not loving Jeff Goldblum’s performance as The Grandmaster? Even if one does not have Ragnarok on their favorite Marvel film list, they cannot deny that this performance is a delightful highlight. The colorful world of Sakaar makes for a great location for an ancient being to live a lustful and zany lifestyle. The character would have definitely not been the same if performed by another actor. Casting Goldblum was literal perfection because he brought what was necessary and more to highlight the film’s specific comedic tone. Can one even think what the film could have been like without him? It turns out that screenwriter Eric Pearson had to think this exact frightening thought during his early script work on Ragnarok.
Yahoo got to recently sit down with Pearson to dig into some behind the scene details. Pearson’s name is well known in the Marvel Studio’s writer’s rooms. He penned the screenplay for 4/5 of the fan favorite Marvel One-Shots. He also has writing credits on Agent Carter. Ragnarok is his first feature film credit for the studio.
He revealed that he was barely getting to the introduction of The Grandmaster and the world of Sakaar in the script when he first found out that Marvel was hoping to cast Goldblum. He explained that him knowing the actor in mind for the studio played a great role in his writing process.
“There are so many different ways you can go with that character. He could be a power-hungry monster. Or he’s cool and vindictive. And they’re like, ‘We’re going to Jeff Goldblum.’ And I’m like, ‘Got it.’”
It seemed really coincidental that the script just happened to feature the perfect lines for Goldblum’s comedic delivery. Pearson got to experience something that many writers can only dream about. He wrote a unique villain specifically for Goldblum knowing that the actor was being sought out for the role. Knowing who is probably going to play the roles in a script can be at times extremely beneficial to a writer’s work process. Pearson revealed that he took this advantage without any hesitation. Little did he know that he would soon receive some worrisome news.
“And then at one point they came back and said it’s not going to work out. I’m like, ‘No! Who’s going to do all this now?’”
Thank the Norse Gods that Goldblum came through and gave it his best in the end. If he had decided to pass on the role, then Pearson would have only faced more hurdles to overcome in his track to complete the script. The Grandmaster and the wild parties that he DJ’s have now become iconic in the eyes of fans. One can only think what the role could have been like if Pearson did not know of Goldblum’s possible casting. This only shows the great power and influence that lies with the mind of the screenwriter.
Stay tuned for more news and updates on the MCU leading up to the release of Black Panther next February- Andrew J. Salazar (@yokis101 on Twitter)