How Doctor Strange 2’s Benedict Cumberbatch Felt When He Learned The Director Was Leaving The Sequel

CinemaBlend participates in affiliate programs with various companies. We may earn a commission when you click on or make purchases via links.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe has become a well-oiled machine, with every installment in Phase Three resulting in box office and critical success. But behind the scenes shake-ups still happen, like when Doctor Strange director Scott Derrickson departed the sequel, making room for Sam Raimi to take the reins. And Benedict Cumberbatch recently revealed how he felt when he learned Derrickson wouldn’t be back for The Multiverse of Madness.

Scott Derrickson brought something wholly original to the MCU with Doctor Strange, featuring the introduction of magic and some seriously trippy visual sequences. But he won’t be back for the highly anticipated sequel, with horror legend Sam Raimi behind Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. This was obviously quite the change, and Benedict Cumberbatch explained his POV on the shake-up, saying:

I was sad to hear about it, but that was not my decision. I completely respected the studio’s decision, and it was done very amicably. The grown-ups called and just talked me through it. And that was that.

Well, there you have it. It looks like Benedict Cumberbatch understands how the entertainment industry works, and the various shake-ups that can come along the way. So while he was sad to hear he wouldn’t be collaborating with Scott Derrickson on Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, he was ultimately able to move forward and work under the direction of another filmmaker.

Benedict Cumberbatch’s comments about Scott Derrickson’s departure from Doctor Strange 2 come from a recent interview the actor did with THR. He did a deep dive into his tenure in the MCU, including his cryptically titled sequel. And that includes what it was like to see the director of said project change.

Marvel fans can re-watch Doctor Strange’s time in the MCU so far on Disney+. You can use this link to sign up for the streaming service.

Scott Derrickson both co-wrote and directed the original Doctor Strange movie, so his talents were key to the character joining the MCU. It’s for this reason that his departure from the sequel was such a surprise, with the studio citing creative differences. Luckily Sam Raimi has a legacy of his own, especially within the superhero genre.

Of course, Scott Derrickson isn’t the only Marvel director who has departed a Marvel blockbuster over the years. Ant-Man was originally meant to be helmed by Edgar Wright, before he also departed over creative differences. The Thor movies have had a variety of directors, while Captain Marvel 2 has been handed over to Nia DaCosta.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is currently expected to arrive in theaters on March 25th, 2022. In the meantime, check out the 2021 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.