Doctor Strange was first referenced in Captain America: The Winter Soldier and now we’re a little over a year away from his own movie. Which will, in fact, be an origin story (surprise, surprise).
“For some reason people sometimes talked about how we’re not doing an origin story, we’re bored of origin stories. I think people are bored of origin stories they’ve seen before or origin stories that are overly familiar. Doctor Strange has one of the best, most classic, most unique origin stories of any hero we have, so why wouldn’t we do that? That was sort of always the plan. How you tell that origin, perhaps there are ways to twist it or play with that, but for the most part, it’s a gift when the comics have something with such clarity of story and of character. That doesn’t always happen in the comics, and when it does, you use it.”
Feige hits the nail on the head. Origin stories don’t have to be boring and weary – as long as they’re done well. Seeing the same film over and over doesn’t sound enjoyable; see why I’m excited about the fact that the new Spider-Man film won’t be killing Uncle Ben again. But being an origin story doesn’t inherently mean the movie has to be cookie-cutter.
And if anyone’s going to have a unique and watchable origin story, it’s going to be Doctor Strange. (For the record, I’ll make the same argument for Black Panther and Captain Marvel once they get closer, two films I’m arguably more excited about.)
The film follows the story of Stephen Strange, a neurosurgeon who, after a horrific car accident, discovers the world of magic and alternate dimensions.
One of his forays into this world will be Rachel Mcadams, who Feige says “plays a very, very big part in the movie and represents a certain point of view of the worlds that we experience in that movie, but Doctor Strange, without a doubt, is the character we follow through the movie.”
While a vague statement, it does support the idea that she’ll be playing Clea, a character well-known in the Dark Dimension and Strange’s estranged wife. Still, movies can always use familiar character names while changing them for their own storytelling purposes.
The last comment Feige made was on Tilda Swinton’s Ancient One:
“We get an amazing actress to play an amazing character, and do it in a way that’s very unique and doesn’t fall into any outdated stereotypes that sometimes pop up in the comics from years past. It’s funny you ask ‘Will Tilda Swinton be playing a woman?’ and you ask it because she does an amazing job of being sort of ambiguous in terms of gender. I think you’ll see us playing it in ways that she’s played other characters that way. Clearly she’s a woman, but it is very ambiguous in her portrayal.”
I really hope he’s being genuine about her portrayal not falling into any stereotype traps. Swinton is an incredibly talented actress, so I’m sure she can pull off anything, but I just hope the script supports that as well. After all, gender hasn’t been people’s main issue with Swinton’s casting, but rather the fact that the Ancient One is from Tibet.
Still, Doctor Strange looms to be another hit for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and more ambitious to boot.
It’s set to come out November 4, 2016, with Scott Derrickson directing and Jon Spaihts penning the script. It stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Rachel McAdams, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Tilda Swinton so far.
Are you excited to see Doctor Strange’s origin story? What do you think about McAdams playing Clea? Sound off in the comments!
Image: Marvel Comics