Benedict Cumberbatch officially cast as Doctor Strange. After a period of rumors, passes, considerations, and negotiations, Benedict Cumberbatch, in final talks for the part since October, has signed the dotted line.
The official press release for the casting:
Benedict Cumberbatch has entered the world of the mystic arts.
The actor will star in Marvel’s “Doctor Strange,” scheduled to hit theaters November 4, 2016. The film, directed by Scott Derrickson with Jon Spaihts writing the screenplay, will follow the story of neurosurgeon Doctor Stephen Strange who, after a horrific car accident, discovers the hidden world of magic and alternate dimensions.
“Stephen Strange’s story requires an actor capable of great depth and sincerity,” said Producer Kevin Feige. “In 2016, Benedict will show audiences what makes Doctor Strange such a unique and compelling character.”
Cumberbatch rose to international prominence with his critically acclaimed turn as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s most famous creation in “Sherlock,” currently preparing its fourth season. The series’ most recent season earned Cumberbatch the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie in 2014, after winning the BAFTA/LA Britannia Award for British Artist of the Year in 2013.
Cumberbatch most recently starred in “The Imitation Game,” playing famed mathematician and logician Alan Turing, and will soon be seen in “The Hobbit: The Army of the Five Armies” as Smaug and the Necromancer. For the role of Smaug, Cumberbatch stepped into the world of motion capture to bring the dragon to life. He will next be seen in Scott Cooper’s film “Black Mass,” the story of Whitey Bulger coming to theaters next September, where he stars opposite Johnny Depp and Joel Edgerton.
The star’s other credits include the Academy Award-winning “12 Years a Slave,” “War Horse,” “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” “August: Osage County,” “Star Trek Into Darkness,” “The Fifth Estate,” and “Parade’s End.” Benedict will be returning to the stage this summer in Hamlet at the Barbican with Lyndsey Turner directing. His last stage performance in Danny Boyle’s Frankenstein opposite Jonny Lee Miller awarded him the Olivier.
With “Doctor Strange,” Cumberbatch is just the latest actor to join the bold Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, introducing new heroes and continuing the adventures of fan favorites across multiple films.
While the announcement will likely generate all sorts of buzz around the project, bringing the character to the attention of the actor’s fans, not every source fan is thrilled with the idea. Cumberbatch has had some detractors, mostly unhappy with his turn as Kahn, for J.J. Abrams‘ Star Trek: Into Darkness.
As one of Marvel’s lower tier characters, however, there is room for a broad interpretation of Dr. Stephen Strange. Defenders have cited Robert Downey Jr, who took liberties with a better known source character, only to become synonymous with the role.
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