I agree. Downey wasn't the selling point by any means. After seeing it, though, it was pretty clear he took the character where a lesser known person may not have. I guess it comes down to acting talent in the end though.
Really, I don't know. I've always liked Thor a lot, and would like to see people and the production company really embrace it. If they put an unknown actor in there simply because he looks like Thor, I think it'd be a huge mistake and would be abandoned by fans that are on the fence. Just my thought on it. I could very well be wrong.
Also, this isn't to say that a seasoned actor would be a sure hit for the part. Halle Berry as Catwoman, Ben Affleck as Daredevil, and Jennifer Garner as Elektra come to mind in this respect.
Some actors are well known for their roles as superheroes; Michael Keaton and Christian Bale as Batman, Christopher Reeve as Superman, Tobey Maguire as Spider-Man, Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man or Hugh Jackman as Wolverine. Supervillains are no doubt going to become more prominent the films, especially given the widespread praise of Heath Ledger as the Joker. What remains to be seen, though, is how the next set of superheroes and villains will fare in the next couple years of comic book films.
News of Kevin McKidd as Thor is no doubt exciting, as I think he's a fairly solid actor, given his work on HBO's Rome and his leading role as a time traveler in the primetime show Journeyman. Just please, please don't put a wig on him to make him look exactly like Thor. It's really not necessarily. There were murmurs of Brad Pitt playing the Norse god, or maybe even an unknown. Both options worried me, as I'd hate to see the potential of a Thor film go down the short and lonely road that Daredevil, Elektra and the Punisher took.
Once the Thor casting is filled, I'm going to be turning my attention to the next Iron Man film, as I'm really looking forward to seeing Don Cheadle as War Machine. Also, I'm anxious to see a Wonder Woman, Captain Marvel and maybe even Aquaman film, so that in several years they can roll out a legendary Justice League film. Probably not likely, but hey, a guy can dream.
Superheroes have traditionally been defined by villains. Superman has faced trials from such enemies as Doomsday and Bizarro. Batman has been shaped most prominently by the Riddler, the Joker and Two Face. The main test of Spider-Man has been his ability to stand the corruption of Venom and the Green Goblin. Without super villains, there may very well be no need for superheroes.
After reading some of the work of Krueger with the artwork of the masterful Alex Ross, I see that this doesn't really have to be the case. The premise of the Justice series is that the super villains are able to incapacitate the heroes and have the masses turn to them to fix the worlds ills after a show of "noble" philanthrophy. Feeding the hungry, ending poverty, making water readily available to all, fighting crime; these were the ills the super villains sought to extinguish, for lack of any action on the part of heroes.
This begs the question, if superheroes were to exist, what would we want them for? Certainly they not only would they be required to defeat their foes, but to what extend could they, or should they, be philanthropists? At what point should Captain Marvel or Captain America set aside the perpetual struggle against their enemies in order to serve a higher cause, such as delivering food to the far, barren corners of the Third World, or act as goodwill ambassador for the United Nations? Shouldn't this be expected of our superheroes? If not, then we may find ourselves ever willing to embrace villains in their stead.