Benedict Cumberbatch is in negotiations to take on the titular role in Marvel’s film, slated for release on July 8, 2016.
For the past few months, some of Hollywood’s biggest names have been linked to the role. Joaquin Phoenix was at one time in negotiations, but the talks fell apart in early October. Other names floating around included Cumberbatch, Ryan Gosling, Jared Leto, Tom Hardy, Justin Theroux, Ethan Hawke and Keanu Reeves.
Benedict had been an early contender for the role and was again in the running after Phoenix dropped out. But his schedule, including his theater commitments, were always a conflict. But with Marvel not shooting Strange as early as previously believed, it looks like time will not affect this good doctor.
Cumberbatch comes with an incredibly large fan base thanks to his Sherlock show and impeccable dramatic cred. And with The Imitation Game shaping up to be a major awards contender this season, a best actor nomination (or more) could also be on his curriculum vitae.
Scott Derrickson is directing the Marvel feature, which centers on a former neurosurgeon who serves as the Sorcerer Supreme — the primary protector of Earth against magical and mystical threats. Doctor Strange made his first appearance in the Marvel Universe more than 50 years ago, and was first created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko in the pages of Strange Tales No. 110.