Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 19 April 2014

James Hunt role 'like a superhero'

Chris Hemsworth arriving for the premiere of Rush

Chris Hemsworth has likened playing Formula One champion James Hunt in Rush to playing superhero Thor.

The Australian heartthrob was joined in London's Leicester Square by co-stars Daniel Bruhl, Olivia Wilde, Alexandra Mari Lara and director Ron Howard for the premiere of the gripping real-life drama.

The film charts the rivalry between racers James Hunt (played by Chris) and Niki Lauda for the Formula One World Championship in 1976.

Lauda survived a catastrophic crash in Germany in the middle of the season, which almost killed him. But just weeks later he was back on the track challenging English rival Hunt again.

Chris said of comparing the role to that of comic book hero Thor: "It's a little different and little similar in odd ways.

"I guess, playing a real-life character, there's a huge responsibility and weight on your shoulders to do that person justice and memory of that person.

"And then I guess Thor, he's not a real person as such, but he had a huge following of people for 60 years who knew much more about him than I did. So in a way they were both daunting."

Lauda, portrayed by Daniel in the film, and writer Peter Morgan were also on the red carpet.

Daniel revealed that making the movie got him addicted to the thrill of driving fast cars. The German actor said: "After one lap, I totally got the addiction because it's pure addiction. The whole car vibrates through your body. I see totally why young guys want to become a race driver."

Other stars on the red carpet included racers Jenson Button, Sergio Perez and David Coulthard, as well as Bernie Ecclestone and David Hasselhoff. Rush is due to be released in the UK on September 13.

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