New 'Thor' and 'Alien' movies to be shot in Australia

SYDNEY, Australia – Two big budget blockbusters, including the next Marvel superhero Thor installment and Ridley Scott's new Alien film, will be shot in Australia from next year, the government said Thursday, October 22.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said the deal to film Marvel Studios' Ragnarok, starring Australian actor Chris Hemsworth, and Scott's production for Twentieth Century Fox would generate 3,000 jobs and Aus$300 million ($216 million) for the economy.

"Australia's creative industries are well placed to take advantage of a growing global economy and I have been actively promoting Australia for the production of major international films," Bishop said.

The announcement comes after recent trips to the United States during which Bishop lauded Australia for its highly qualified workforce, innovative technology, stable economy and low dollar.

The original Thor in 2011, based on the Marvel Comics character, was a box office smash and was followed by a sequel Thor: The Dark World in 2013, also starring Hemsworth.

Sci-fi horror movie Alien, directed by Scott, was a cult hit in 1979 and led to 3 sequels.

He is directing 4 prequels, beginning with the 2012 release of Prometheus.

The latest installment to be shot in Australia will be the second in that series, tipped to be called Alien: Paradise Lost. –