In less than a month, Marvel Studios will unleash its latest superhero franchise as Benedict Cumberbatch takes on the role of the Sorcerer Supreme in Doctor Strange. However, speaking to Empire, the British actor has revealed that he almost missed out due to his commitments to a stage production of Hamlet.
“[I] really did think I had to kiss it goodbye,” said Cumberbatch. “If you can’t jump on board when the ride’s going past, that’s usually it. So the hugest compliment they paid me was to come back to me. It motivated me to try to fulfill their faith in me.”
As it happened, director Scott Derrickson felt that Cumberbatch was the only fit for the role, despite meeting with Jared Leto, Ryan Gosling and Joaquin Phoenix, so Marvel chief Kevin Feige pushed the film back from its original summer date in order to secure Cumberbatch’s participation.
Meanwhile, Cumberbatch has also confirmed that he’ll be following up his solo debut with an appearance alongside Earth’s Mightiest Heroes in Avengers: Infinity War, stating that: “To get us all together will be quite something. That’s why this character is being introduced, to open up the next chapter. So watch this space to see how that unfolds.
Marvel’s Doctor Strange follows the story of the talented neurosurgeon Doctor Stephen Strange who, after a tragic car accident, must put ego aside and learn the secrets of a hidden world of mysticism and alternate dimensions. Based in New York City’s Greenwich Village, Doctor Strange must act as an intermediary between the real world and what lies beyond, utilizing a vast array of metaphysical abilities and artifacts to protect the Marvel cinematic universe.
Doctor Strange is set for release on October 25th in the UK and November 4th in the US, with Scott Derrickson (Sinister) directing a cast that includes Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock) as Stephen Strange, Tilda Swinton (Snowpiercer) as The Ancient One, Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave) as Baron Mordo, Benedict Wong (The Martian) as Wong, Rachel McAdams (True Detective) as Christine Palmer, Mads Mikkelsen (Hannibal) as Kaecilius and Benjamin Bratt (The Infiltrator) in an as-yet-unrevealed role.