There is at least a possibility, albeit a slim one and one that requires quite a bit of speculation, that a dead Marvel Cinematic Universe character may be making their return in Thor: Love and Thunder. The word may is currently doing a lot of work there, this much is true. In any event, some recent photos shared by director Taika Waititi have at least opened the door for such speculation.
Before diving in we must again reiterate that this is largely speculative. There is currently no official evidence that said character is gearing up for an MCU return. That said, Taika Waititi, who previously directed Thor: Ragnarok, recently shared several photos of himself and Idris Elba, who plays Heimdall in the MCU. The two were enjoying a rugby match with one another in New Zealand. Waititi shared the images with the following caption.
"Me and Idris Elba visited the All Blacks last week and I think we can all agree that's what inspired last night's win. Caught up with the uso Ardie Savea while Drisco tried to steal the Bleddy."
Here is what we know for sure. Taika Waititi has been doing pre-production work on Thor 4, which is expected to begin filming in Australia in January. Chris Hemsworth will return as Thor, with Tessa Thompson reprising her role as Valkyrie and Jane Foster making her MCU return as Jane Foster. Jane will additionally be taking up the mantle of Thor in the sequel. Beyond that, little has been revealed in terms of specifics. So it is at least conceivable, be it through a flashback or some other means, that Heimdall could also return in some fashion.
Idris Elba has been playing Heimdall since the first Thor was released in 2011. When last we saw Heimdall, it was after the events of Ragnarok at the beginning of Avengers: Infinity War. Heimdall gave his life to ensure that Bruce Banner could get back to Earth in order to warn his fellow heroes of Thanos' impending arrival. His death seemed quite definitive, as presented on screen. However, when it comes to comic book movies, few characters are ever truly dead. We have seen plenty of fake-outs in the MCU previously, such as Nick Fury in The Winter Soldier. Not to mention half of all life in the universe being brought back in Avengers: Endgame.
Save for the possible return of Heimdall, Christian Bale is set to play the movie's villain. The identity of said villain has yet to be revealed. Plus, Chris Pratt will return as Star-Lord to help resolve the thread that was left hanging at the end of Avengers: Endgame, with Groot also rumored to be getting in on the action. Thor: Love and Thunder is currently set to hit theaters on February 11, 2021. We'll be sure to keep you posted as any further details are made available. Be sure to check out the photos from Taika Waititi's Instagram.