As the future of its Ant-Man movie remains pretty uncertain, Marvel Studios has switched gears and announced the director of its upcoming Doctor Strange flick: Scott Derrickson, the writer/director of horror movies including Sinister, The Exorcism of Emily Rose and Deliver Us From Evil.

Derrickson has also helmed some non-horror big budget movies, including 2008 remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still, but given that most of his recent output has been pure horror, the unstated message here seems to be that Doctor Strange will be a full-on fright fest. At least until he and Marvel part over creative differences.

Seriously, though, that's pretty interesting, considering that Doctor Strange has never been what I'd call a horror character, despite his many dealings with supernatural forces, demons, dark magic, and so forth. But his stories have always tended to be more fantastical, while other Marvel characters, such as Son of Satan, Werewolf By Night, and, you know, Dracula, have tended to be more horror-focused. The decision perhaps suggests a tone that won't necessarily please Doctor Strange fans, but may be very palatable to general movie audiences, who made the low-budget Sinister a surprise hit back in 2012.

The Hollywood Reporter explained how the announcement of Derrickson's involvement with Doctor Strange may relate to Ant-Man:

Though Marvel's Ant-Man hit a couple of hiccups over the past couple of weeks when director Edgar Wright exited the project, and then potential replacement Adam McKay dropped out of talks, the studio is moving full stream ahead on Doctor Strange.

Wright's departure from Ant-Man was apparently over script disagreements; Marvel is still looking for writers for the Doctor Strange movie. Writers Jon Aibel and Glenn Berger are said to be in the running.

There's no release date for the movie based on Steve Ditko's sorcerer character just yet. The company apparently has slots to fill in 2016 and 2017, so perhaps it could fill in one of those.

[Via THR]

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