With the events of Disney+’s Loki having opened up the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s multiverse, two movies are set to explore this aspect of the superhero franchise in the near future: Spider-Man: No Way Home and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. But these movies are closely tied together beyond that, as the third Tom Holland-led Spider-Man movie includes Alfred Molina’s Doctor Octopus as one of its villains, and Sam Raimi, who directed Molina as Doc Ock in Spider-Man 2, is helming the Doctor Strange sequel. Add in that these movies were being worked on at the same time, and that made for a trippy experience for Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige.
While Kevin Feige has had an integral role guiding the proverbial MCU ship since its inception, it’s important to remember his Marvel cred stretches back to being an associate producer on 2000’s X-Men and 2002’s Spider-Man. For the latter movie’s two sequels, Feige served as an executive producer, and to have both Sam Raimi and an Alfred Molina-played Doc Ock back in his life over a decade later was a treat for him. Here’s how Feige described it to Empire:
Sam Raimi took over directorial duties on Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness following the departure of Scott Derrickson, who helmed the first Doctor Strange movie. Raimi has said before that like Spider-Man, Doctor Strange was one of his favorite superheroes growing up (which explains the name-drop in Spider-Man 2), so it’s fitting that he was hired to take over the Master of the Mystic Arts’ film series. As for Alfred Molina’s Doctor Octopus, while we still don’t know the full story on why he, Jamie Foxx’s Electro and other villains from elsewhere in the Marvel multiverse are causing trouble in Spider-Man: No Way Home, Molina did reveal that he was digitally de-aged to look as he did during his first outing as the tentacled supervillain.
After we witness Benedict Cumberbatch’s Stephen Strange team up with Tom Holland’s Peter Parker in Spider-Man: No Way Home, he’ll venture out on his own again to explore parallel realities, where he’ll run into familiar faces like Elizabeth Olsen’s Scarlet Witch and Chiwetel Ejiofor’s Mordo, as well as new ones, like Xochitl Gomez’s America Chavez. Here’s what Kevin Feige has to say about the MCU delving into the multiverse:
If you thought Thanos wiping out half of the universe’s population with the Infinity Stones was a big deal, just wait until the MCU delivers its full payload of multiversal craziness. We’ve already gotten a taste of this with the animated What If… ? series, but Spider-Man: No Way Home and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness are kicking things up a notch. For Kevin Feige though, these projects also serve as a pleasant reminder of how far he’s come in his Marvel career.
Spider-Man: No Way Home arrives on December 17, and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness was recently pushed back to May 6, 2022. Our upcoming Marvel movies guide is available to those of you curious what else this franchise is sending to the silver screen, and you can catch up on past Marvel movies and original series over on Disney+.
Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.
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