LOS ANGELES-Chris Hemsworth wouldn't stop taking his shirt off in 'Bad Times at the El Royal'.

The hunky actor portrays cult leader Billy Lee in the upcoming crime thriller and though he appears topless in a number of scenes, director Drew Goddard insists it wasn't at his request. The filmmaker laughed: ''I kept putting the shirt off him but I turned my back and the next thing you know, it's off. I can't blame him.''

Chris is best known for playing Thor in the Marvel Cinematic Universe but Drew - who previously worked with the Australian star on 'Cabin In the Woods' - promised his latest role will be very different. He told Total Film magazine: ''[Billy Lee] is a departure from what you're used to be seeing on screen.'' And the filmmaker hopes the movie is a big surprise to viewers.

He teased: ''You don't want to be audacious for the sake of it. But if there's a turn that may not be conventional but it excites me, I learnt to trust that instinct and follow where that will take you.''

Meanwhile, Dakota Johnson, who also stars in the movie, recently claimed she found it very distracting whenever Chris took his shirt off.

She said: ''I think it was a really big mistake to have him take his shirt off.

''Because it's all you can look at. It's so astonishing. It's really impressive.

''He may or may not do a little dance of sorts. And it's so, so spectacular.''

And Jon Hamm - who plays a salesman - claimed he was desperate for shirtless scenes of his own.

He said: ''Shirtless Hemsworth is everybody's first choice [as an ally].''

When Dakota asked if he was jealous, he quipped: ''No. Everyone wanted him to take his shirt off and everyone was like, 'Please keep it on. Please keep it on.'

''I'm like, 'I'm wet! I've been rained on for three days. Can I take my shirt off?!' They're like, 'Then let us clear the set. You can do that on your own time.' ''