Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness just had something of a big setback just months before production was scheduled to begin. As reported by Variety, director Scott Derrickson has exited the project due to creative differences with Marvel Studios. Derrickson is set to remain as an executive producer on the project.
“Marvel Studios and Scott Derrickson have amicably parted ways on ‘Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness’ due to creative differences,” Marvel said in a statement. We remain grateful to Scott for his contributions to the MCU.”
Derrickson took to Twitter to confirm the news personally. The director expressed his gratitude and also confirmed that he would remain involved as a producer.
“Marvel and I have mutually agreed to part ways on Doctor Strange: In the Multiverse of Madness due to creative differences. I am thankful for our collaboration and will remain on as EP,” Derrickson said.
The specific reasons for the split remain unclear. Derrickson, when the project was announced at San Diego Comic-Con last summer, promised that he was going to make the first “scary” MCU movie. Prior to his work with Marvel, Derrickson directed movies such as Sinister and The Exorcism of Emily Rose.
It’s entirely possible that Derrickson wanted to push the horror further than Marvel head Kevin Feige and Co. were comfortable with. Either way, Marvel is now in need of a new director, and they will need to find one in a hurry. Production is expected to begin in May and the studio does not intend to delay things, despite the speed bump. At present, there is no word on who may be tapped to take over the director’s chair.
Derrickson directed the first Doctor Strange to great success. Despite the fact that the character, who is played by Benedict Cumberbatch in the MCU, was largely unknown to the masses before the film’s release, it grossed $677 million at the global box office. Critics also responded kindly, as the movie holds an 89 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Here’s the synopsis for Doctor Strange.
“Dr. Stephen Strange’s (Benedict Cumberbatch) life changes after a car accident robs him of the use of his hands. When traditional medicine fails him, he looks for healing, and hope, in a mysterious enclave. He quickly learns that the enclave is at the front line of a battle against unseen dark forces bent on destroying reality. Before long, Strange is forced to choose between his life of fortune and status or leave it all behind to defend the world as the most powerful sorcerer in existence.”
The sequel will bring back Cumberbatch, Benedict Wong and Rachel McAdams, as well as Chiwetel Ejiofor as Mordo. There is no word yet on who will be playing the main villain, who is expected to be Nightmare.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is set to hit theaters on May 7, 2021.