Doctor Who isn’t even beginning the search for Peter Capaldi’s replacement until sometime this summer, but that isn’t stopping overseas betting agencies from attaching major stars to the title role. After some initial oddsmakers’ bets, another agency is placing high odds on not only a female Doctor, but on Tilda Swinton at that.
When you get right down to it, there’s something delightfully surreal about watching our generation’s best actors tie themselves to the ceiling and spout metaphysical gibberish at the camera. Doctor Strange may not be my personal favorite superhero movie, but it’s undeniably the one with my favorite cast; Benedict Cumberbatch, Tilda Swinton, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Mads Mikkelsen would represent an embarrassment of riches for any movie, let alone one focused on time travel and temperamental capes.
Long before Finn Jones was cast in the role of Netflix’s Iron Fist, Marvel made headlines with reports that it considered casting actors of Asian descent for the title character. That didn’t come to pass, nor did Marvel improve matters with certain Doctor Strange castings, to which Iron Fist star and Danny Rand auditionee Lewis Tan admits “I’m not the biggest fan of that casting choice.”
The pleasures of Marvel’s Doctor Strange are, first and foremost, visual. Here is a movie of incredible images and bizarre sights. In comparison to its mind-boggling special-effects sequences, the movie’s characters sometimes feel a little flat and generic. I sometimes found myself wanting the characters to stop talking so they could take us on another wild trip through the multiverse.
You’ve seen Doctor Strange. You’ve read our spoiler-free Doctor Strange review. Now you’re ready to go deeper. Like Stephen Strange himself, you’re ready for ultimate knowledge. All you know is a wise Celtic mystic to touch you on the forehead and open your “eye.”
The most common knock against Marvel’s cinematic universe: All their movies look the same. In a mega-franchise spanning 14 films and counting, that look can get pretty stale. For the most part, these movies about bravery are pretty timid when it comes to visual storytelling.
I just had a lovely conversation with Tilda Swinton about Doctor Strange, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and, of all things, her love of Talladega Nights. We’ll bring you the full conversation a little bit closer to Doctor Strange’s release date. But in the meantime, here is one interesting tidbit: Tilda Swinton wants to make a spinoff Strange film about her character, the Ancient One, the immortal teacher and master of the mystical arts who teaches Benedict Cumberbatch’s Stephen Strange the ways of magic.
We’re just a couple of weeks away from the release of Doctor Strange, which adds a new, mystical layer to the Marvel Cinematic Universe with all sorts of wild concepts like transcending astral planes and traveling between dimensions. It’s a lot to take in, especially for the titular character, an arrogant surgeon who — as you can see in these new clips — has a tendency to be quite stubborn.
Like Guardians of the Galaxy and Ant-Man before it, Doctor Strange is kind of a wild card in the Marvel Cinematic Universe — the titular hero doesn’t have the same name recognition among general audiences as, say, Captain America. But Marvel is using that to their advantage and taking some bolder creative risks with the Sorcerer Supreme’s solo outing. At a special preview event, the studio screened 15 dizzying minutes of IMAX footage from the upcoming film, and it’s far weirder and wilder than those trailers are letting on.
The onslaught of Doctor Strange promotional materials continued today with more set visit info, more teases, and more character posters like the ones below, which feature Tilda Swinton, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Mads Mikkelsen careening through a kaleidoscopic multiverse of New York Cities. These are the sorcerers of Kamar-Taj, the remote Tibetan home of the Ancient One (Swinton) and her disciplines in the matters of the macabre and the magical.