For the past 24 hours or so, we've been completely distracted by the news of Civil War brewing in the Marvel Cinematic Universe... but that doesn't mean we've completely forgotten about the Doctor Strange casting race. In recent weeks and months we've heard a constant stream of rumors about who will play the Master of the Mystic Arts, and while names like Joaquin Phoenix, Ethan Hawke and Keanu Reeves have been mentioned as potential candidates for the gig, Marvel has not yet revealed their choice. Until they do, the rumor mill is just going to keep turning, which is how we now come to this most recent report.
Inside, unnamed sources have reached out to Badass Digest with the news that Ewan McGregor is the most recent candidate that Marvel Studios has been looking at to possibly play the title role of Doctor Strange. The actor has reportedly already been doing some preparation for the part, "doing the usual research actors do when looking at taking on an adaptation or existing character." While it's far from confrmation of anything, the sources told that site that Marvel is "looking at him."
McGregor, of course, is no stranger to making blockbuster sci-fi franchise films. Hell, even the idea of having him playing a wise, mystical dude with facial hair in a blockbuster sci-fi franchise isn't new. The guy was Obi-wan!
Of course, Doctor Strange and Obi-wan Kenobi are very different characters, but it's not hard to see how one role kind of opens the door for the other. If his involvement with Star Wars is any indication, McGregor may not have qualms about signing an extended, multi-picture contracts with a studio that will see him returning to the same part year after year. He's also clearly open to fan-friendly material, and (if the rumor can be believed) it's nice that he would already start diving into Marvel Comics source material at this point in the casting process.
Doctor Strange is being directed by Scott Derrickson based on a screenplay by Jon Spaihts, and while an official release date has not yet been announced, it's expected that the film will be taking the July 8, 2016 release date that Marvel Studios has already reserved. Filming is scheduled to take place next summer in England, but there are plenty more details that need to be worked out before then. Hopefully it won't be much longer until a lead actor is announced, and when he is, you can be sure that you'll be able to find the details here!
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Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.