After months of speculation about who would fill the title role, Marvel finally announced last week that Benedict Cumberbatch would indeed star in Doctor Strange. Hopefully this next casting decision wont take as long. Rumor has it that Marvel has approached Morgan Freeman, Ken Watanabe, and Bill Nighy for the role of The Ancient One. If you’re not familiar, The Ancient One is the former “Sorcerer Supreme” and Doctor Strange’s mentor. He also mentored Baron Karl Mordo, who is heavily speculated to feature as the villain of Doctor Strange.
Scott Derrickson (Sinister) is directing the film from a script by John Spaihts. Doctor Strange is set to hit theaters November 4, 2016. Hit the jump for more.
The rumor comes from Latino Review, with the outlet claiming they’ve heard from multiple sources that Marvel has reached out to Freeman, Watanabe, and Nighy. What’s most exciting to me about this is the cultural diversity of the rumored contenders. There’s been a lot of debate about the “white-washing” of Doctor Strange. I don’t know enough about the comics to comment on that, but I do find it exciting when casting directors approach a role with color-blind eyes. And that’s what I’m getting here. They’re looking for the best actor regardless of race, and that’s fantastic. There’s also no denying that all three are tremendous actors and perfect for any kind of sage mentor role.
Aside from the release date and the casting of the title character (finally!) we still don’t know a whole lot about the Doctor Strange movie. We do know that Benedict Cumberbatch is currently filming the Sherlock Christmas special and that he’s confirmed for a return to theater over the summer, meaning the film likely won’t being production until late next year. Here’s the official summary provided by Marvel:
The film, directed by Scott Derrickson with Jon Spaihts writing the screenplay, will follow the story of neurosurgeon Doctor Stephen Strange who, after a horrific car accident, discovers the hidden world of magic and alternate dimensions.