Chris Hemsworth Talks ‘Painful ‘Thor’ Diet & Co-Star Natalie Portman

No pain, no gain especially for actors suiting up as Marvel superheroes. In Chris Hemsworth’s case, his pain in preparing for the title role in the upcoming “Thor” came in the form chicken breasts!

Access Hollywood caught up with the 27-year-old Australian actor at CinemaCon 2011 in Las Vegas this week, where the hunky actor was named Male Star of Tomorrow.

“A lot of eating, a lot of chicken, steak, rice and vegetables,” he said of his intense “Thor” diet. “I put on about 20 pounds at one stage and then sort of pulled it back a bit.”

Access asked if the actor if could relate to Hugh Jackman’s “Wolverine” diet woes.

“I heard him apologize to community of chickens in the world for killing so many, and I probably have to do the same,” Chris said.

The exercise regime didn’t bother the actor, but the limited menu options did.

“The working out I didn’t mind so much, I’ve trained most of life; I’ve been pretty active, but eating that amount of food – it wasn’t the fun food – you know, it was dry chicken breast, it was pretty painful!” he told Access.

While the food part wasn’t fun, Chris is excited that his work is paying off in many ways. For starters, as “Thor,” he becomes the first Marvel hero getting the 3-D treatment.

“I hear great things,” he said of the movie opening on May 6. “It’ll be the first Marvel film in 3-D.”

The Aussie star also told Access that he was psyched about co-starring with Oscar winner Natalie Portman.

“She’s fantastic. She’s been one of my favorite actresses for years and to work alongside her was a blessing,” he continued. “And she’s incredibly collaborative and fun.”

“Thor” hits theaters in just weeks, but there will be no rest in Chris’ Norse god diet.

“We start shooting [‘The Avengers’] in a couple of months,” he told Access.

“The Avengers,” due out in 2012, will unite Marvel’s greatest heroes including, Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Chris Evans as Captain America and Mark Ruffalo as the Incredible Hulk.

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