CBMB: Marvel Continues to Look to Fill Dr. Strange’s Cape | FanboysInc

CBMB: Marvel Continues to Look to Fill Dr. Strange’s Cape

By Muuka Muyumba

The Wrap is reporting Marvel continues to narrow their list for the titular character of Scott Derrickson‘s Dr. Strange. The film has an expected release date of July 8, 2016, but has yet to fill out the lead role for Marvel’s entrance into the the world of magic.

According to The Wrap, Ryan Gosling, Colin Ferrell, Benedict Cumberbatch, and new addition, Keanu Reeves are being considered front-runners for the role, though Jared Leto, Justin Theroux and Oscar Isaac are also pursuing the role. The newest names on the full list, Gosling, Ferrell, and Reeves, have been floated as WB/DC works to fill roles its newly announced roster of films through 2020.

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Marvel has also built its roster out until 2020, but they haven’t clearly unleashed any new titles, nor have they filled un-cast roles like Dr. Steven Strange. So, in one announcement, WB/DC created an illusion by making Marvel appear unsure about its solid future. WB/DC has also clearly charted a course of a diverse universe that reflects poorly on Marvel Studios’ casting choices.

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Marvel could take this chance to make an unconventional lead choice for Dr. Strange, even though their rumored list of picks does not reflect anything different (although Isaac is a Cuban-Guatemalan). So far, Marvel’s most bold casting choice was to put a little known actor in the lead of Guardians of the Galaxy. Chris Pratt was a shining 2nd banana in several films prior to Guardians, but was not diverse when considering the heroes of the Avengers Initiative.

No one suggests that there be a NFL Rooney Rule in Hollywood casting, but the tidal proliferation of superhero films allows producers to make bold choices, and also make casting choices that set their projects apart from one another. WB/DC made their first non-Batman, non-Superman, non-Wonder Woman casting choice with openly-gay Ezra Miller for The Flash. If Will Smith chooses to participate in one of these films, then expect an interested audience to seek out the unique experience of seeing the blockbusting actor portray a classic comic character.

Dr. Strange is a unique icon in Marvel Comics history, but an even more important role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe with the introduction of magic into the previously science-based world of heroes. A bold choice for the role could be a game-changer for Marvel as the character is likely to steer the future of the MCU as Robert Downey, Jr. heads toward background. Allegedly, Downey is working to strong-arm his way back into the MCU after Marvel had reportedly written Iron Man off. Now, he’s getting injected into Captain America 3 in a Civil War storyline that could spark greater inclusion in the future for Tony Stark.

In the comics, Dr. Strange has often been an omniscient hero holding the strands of reality together as the Avengers, Guardians, and X-Men fly between dimensions. Marvel’s reported path for Strange is that the film will resemble a horror film, hence the hiring of Derrickson, and will be less origin story, and more horror-action-thriller. Once-rumored headliner, Joaquin Phoenix reportedly balked at the potential commitment necessary to be feature in a Marvel movie. So, the rumor would suggest that Marvel has significant plans for the Sorcerer Supreme that may position him as a leading figure for the future of the film series.

Marvel’s current short (long) list of actors for Dr. Strange also doesn’t include an actor in his 20s which also signals that they are less interested in a robust film potential, and more focused on the potency of their choice. WB/DC’s hiring of Miller, who is now 22 and will be 25 when filming begins, shows that they are interested in great actors, but also youthful characters to balance older heroes in Batman and Superman. Marvel has yet to go this route, although if new series start in Phase 3 of the MCU, maybe they head that way.

Marvel hired Pratt in February of 2013 for a film released in August of 2014, so they could easily wait until early next year to finalize the role. Marvel has offered no comment on the rumors.