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Photo: Film Frame. ©Marvel Studios 2018

Sam Raimi Confirms he’s Directing Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

It’s finally official—Sam Raimi, the director of the original Spider-Man trilogy—is helming Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Raimi confirmed that he’s helming the Doctor Strange sequel on a conference call with ComingSoon.net to discuss his new Quibi show 50 States of Fright. 

Before we share the quote, here’s a little context. Raimi’s Spider-Man 2, arguably the superhero movie that raised the bar for all the Marvel and DC films to follow, included a funny little Doctor Strange reference. J.K. Simmons‘ J. Jonah Jameson, the editor-in-chief of the Daily Bugle, is talking with his employee Ted Hoffman (played by Sam Raimi’s brother Ted) about what the paper should call Alfred Molina’s villain Otto Octavius. Before settling on Doctor Octopus, one of the possible names they float is Doctor Strange. That’s until Jameson says the name’s already been taken. Now, 16-years later, that little joke in Raimi’s fantastic Spider-Man 2 takes on fresh resonance.

“I loved Doctor Strange as a kid, but he was always after Spider-Man and Batman for me, he was probably at number five for me of great comic book characters. He was so original, but when we had that moment in Spider-Man 2 I had no idea that we would ever be making a Doctor Strange movie, so it was really funny to me that coincidentally that line was in the movie. I gotta say I wish we had the foresight to know that I was going to be involved in the project.”

Raimi is a fantastic director, with real vision and comfort working in multiple genres, including, of course, superhero and horror. He seems like the perfect director to take over for former Doctor Strange 2 helmer Scott Derrickson and take Benedict Cumberbatch’s Sorcerer Supreme into weird new places. Cumberbatch’s Stephen Strange will be joined by Elizabeth Olsen Scarlet Witch/Wanda Maximoff. Olsen’s also starring in the upcoming Disney+ series, WandaVision, which is focused on Scarlet Witch and Paul Bettany’s Vision. That series ties directly into to Multiverse of Madness. To make things even more complex, Marvel’s prime mover Kevin Feige has also said that the Disney+ series Loki, starring Tom Hiddleston as the titular trickster God, will tie into the Doctor Strange sequel, too.

It’s a lot to juggle, but considering Raimi has already built a superhero universe from the ground up in the early 2000s, he’s more than prepared to step into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

For more on Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, read this piece about how pre-production has been rolling along, albeit remotely, due to the spread of COVID-19.

Featured image: Marvel Studios’ AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR. L to R: Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Wong (Benedict Wong). Photo: Film Frame. ©Marvel Studios 2018

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The Credits is an online magazine that tells the story behind the story to celebrate our large and diverse creative community. Focusing on profiles of below-the-line filmmakers, The Credits celebrates the often uncelebrated individuals who are indispensable to the films and TV shows we love.

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