For an admitted and slightly recovering Marvel skeptic, Doctor Strange certainly has my attention. Not long after casting Tilda Swinton as the mystical teacher that molds the titular character of Doctor Strange, which will be directed by Sinister‘s Scott Derrickson, Variety is now reporting that the filmmakers are looking at Mads Mikkelsen, Hannibal himself, as a top contender for an unnamed villainous role in the superhero film. This is yet another major coup for Mikkelsen, who was recently announced as part of the cast for Gareth Edwards‘ hugely anticipated Star Wars Anthology film, Rogue One; Mikkelsen’s role in that film is also currently unknown.
The most exciting thought that this news brings to the foreground is the possibility of Mikkelsen fighting head-to-head with Benedict Cumberbatch, who is set to play Stephen Vincent Strange, a neurosurgeon who unexpectedly is put in line to become the next Sorcerer Supreme; Steve Ditko created the character in the early 1960s. For those whose fan fiction about Sherlock Holmes facing off against Hannibal Lecter, a proper pairing if ever I heard of one, this might be the closes you get to realizing that dream. Swinton’s The Ancient One will also play teacher to Chiwetel Ejiofor‘s Baron Mordo, a colleague and fellow doctor with Strange who will, eventually, become his greatest villain.
Some rumors have suggested that Mikkelsen may be playing the mystical Dormammu, or that he may play a more earthbound character, but honestly, who knows at this point? Interestingly enough, Mikkelsen was being looked at for the lead villain role, Malekith, in Thor: The Dark World awhile back and had to turn it down due to his titular role in NBC’s Hannibal; Christopher Eccleston ultimately played Malekith in the Thor sequel. The news of Mikkelsen being included in any project is enough to rile anticipation, though it’s going to take awhile for the sting of Hannibal‘s cancellation to wear off. Hopefully, by the time Doctor Strange hits theaters in 2016, I will have had enough time to mourn, sob, and scream out enough for me to enjoy seeing the great performer doing anything but torture Will Graham and cook up human organs.
Doctor Strange will be released in theaters nationwide on Nov. 4th, 2016.