In this week’s cover story, EW dives deep on the previously unspilled details, fresh plot developments, and major casting additions of Men in Black: International, the fourth installment in the beloved sci-fi franchise due in theaters June 14.
On the London set late last summer, we also got a chance to ask stars Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson to revisit their earliest memories of the series — and whether they truly believe in little green men (or even just large, obnoxiously verbal worms).
HEMSWORTH, ON HIS FIRST MIB MEMORY
“The shot that’s sort of iconic to me from this whole franchise is Will running through the street in that initial pursuit, which was just such a great way to introduce that character. It has that kind of melding of something that looks like a cop movie, but there’s also a big sci-fi element obviously inserted in there that I just loved, the sense of humor the films always had. It was fantastical enough to be fun and entertaining, but it still felt grounded in that alien intergalactic landscape.
I also think they made these two relatable leads [with Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones] where you knew just enough about Tommy Lee’s backstory without going into great detail — just enough to instantly be aware of what you give up to be in the agency. There’s this heart with both characters, which is essential in any sort of highly elevated genre sort of film like this, you know?”
DOES HE BELIEVE?
“Yeah, I think it’s naïve to think there’s nothing else out there — that we’re alone in the universe — for two reasons. On a ‘How could there not be?’ level, a pure sort of small scientific understanding of it, I think there has to be something else. But even more so, it’s kind of a boring idea to think that it’s just us, you know? I like just sort of getting caught up in what else exists in the universe, and whether one day we will ever find out fully or be able to travel there. It [appeals to] the sense of adventure I’ve always had from a young age… And for the survival of our species, of course, dear God, I hope somebody’s coming to rescue us from ourselves.” [Laughs]
THOMPSON ON HER FIRST MIB MEMORY
“The theme song really [brings back] memories of dancing to that and mimicking what happens in the video. And probably also the slime — I just remember when the aliens die, the way they do it in that sort of Technicolor. That neon slime and probably Will Smith being catapulted in various ways are it for me. The first movie in particular, but all of them really, it holds up so much to an adult sensibility. And as a kid, it really captures the imagination of an alien world in which we can coexist with other life forms in a way that’s just so brilliant.”
DOES SHE BELIEVE?
“Yes! Maybe not in the way that they’re depicted in movies like this one, but this idea that there is some other sort of life, for sure. Playing a character like [MIB:I‘s future agent] Molly, who is, like, full-on X-Files Mulder’ I want to believe,’ has had me thinking about it a lot more. The universe is so vast, I mean there has to be some sort of life form. I don’t know if they’re sentient, I don’t know if they look the way we depict them in pop culture, but yeah, I’m in.”
For more on Men in Black: International, pick up the new issue of Entertainment Weekly on stands Friday, or buy it here now. Don’t forget to subscribe for more exclusive interviews and photos, only in EW.