And it seems that new actor is likely to be Zachary Levi, best known as Chuck Bartowski on the NBC series Chuck. The voice of Flynn Rider in Disney's Tangled has yet to begin negotiations to play Fandral, but THR's Heat Vision is confidently reporting that Levi will soon be getting an offer from Marvel Studios. As is its custom, Marvel had no comment.
So why won't Josh Dallas once again be sporting Fandral's pointy little goatee? Scheduling. Dallas is committed to his dual role as Prince Charming and David Nolan on the ABC series Once Upon a Time. That's actually coincidental, because Levi was initially offered the role in Thor, directed by Kenneth Branagh, but when Chuck unexpectedly avoided cancellation, he had to excuse himself. Before Dallas ended up with the role, Branagh went about hiring Stuart Townsend, who left due to creative differences just before production began. Townsend, of course, was also the guy set to play Aragorn in The Lord of The Rings, but Peter Jackson ended up replacing him with Viggo Mortensen.
So provided the offer goes out and Levi signs up, he'll be joining Tadanobu Asano and Ray Stevenson as Hogun and Volstagg, as well as Jaimie Alexander once again playing unofficial fourth warrior Sif. Chris Hemsworth will swing Mjolnir for the third time following Thor and The Avengers, while franchise cohorts Natalie Portman, Idris Elba, Tom Hiddleston, Anthony Hopkins, and more.
Levi will also be joining a few other newcomers to the series. As we learned late last month, Casino Royale bad guy Mads Mikkelsen is currently in talks to play an unspecified villain in the sequel. On the creative side of things, frequent Games of Thrones director and co-executive producer Alan Taylor is directing, after Branagh declined to return and Patty Jenkins' brief attachment bore no fruit. Returning writer Don Payne contributed early drafts of the screenplay, but Robert Rodat has taken over for revisions.
Marvel Studios and Disney are preparing for a July start to production for Thor 2 in order to meet a November 15, 2013 release date.