Marvel’s Short List for Doctor Strange Director

Doctor Strange

Marvel’s Doctor Strange film has been rumored for several years now. Recently, a short list of possible directors was leaked for the long-awaited Marvel comic book adaptation of Doctor Strange. Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige was initially fast to respond against the rumored short list but reports continue to suggest that Marvel has narrowed their search down to three potential directors; Brave’s Mark Andrews, Warm Bodies’ Jonathan Levine and the latest candidate, Sinister’s director Scott Derrickson.

The Marvel comic book character Doctor Strange is the powerful sorcerer supreme, the primary protector of Earth against all magical and mystical threats. Co-created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko, the character debuted in Strange Tales #110 back in July 1963. Doctor Strange has been a popular Marvel comic book staple since his inception. The character has made several appearances in various Marvel animated films and video games. Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige has long stated his intentions to include the character in the studios “Phase Three” plans.

The three rumored directors each come with a different background of experience. For Mark Andrews, Doctor Strange would be his first live-action after making his feature-film debut with Disney’s Brave which he co-directed with Brenda Chapman and Steve Purcell. Jonathan Levine meanwhile just wrapped a pilot for Fox entitled Rush and has previously helmed The Wackness, All The Boys Love Mandy Lane as well as the hit cancer comedy-drama 50/50 starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Seth Rogan.

Latest addition to the rumored director short list for Marvel’s Doctor Strange film, Scott Derrickson, certainly has the most experience with big budget filmmaking having directed the 2008 remake The Day The Earth Stood Still. Known for the surprise horror hit The Exorcism Of Emily Rose, Derrickson’s next film is scheduled to be released this July. Entitled Deliver Us From Evil, Eric Bana stars as a police officer that must team up with a priest played by Edgar Ramirez to combat horrific possessions that are terrorizing New York City.

Next to nothing is known about the big screen adventures of Doctor Strange. Back in June of 2010, Marvel Studios hired Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer to write the screenplay for a Doctor Strange adaptation. Whether or not Feige intents to use this script is unclear but Donnelly and Oppenheimer have been the only names ever attached to the project. No release date, as of yet, has been set for the Doctor Strange film. Currently, Marvel Studios has three placeholder dates for untitled films on May 6th and July 8th in 2016 as well as May 5th in 2017. It remains a strong possibility that Doctor Strange will make his appearance in 2016 with May 5th being set aside for the third Avengers feature film. 

While Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige has denied talking to anyone on the rumored director short list, many reports suggest that comic book and superhero movie fans will know by the San Diego comic convention in July, just who exactly will be at the helm of the sorcerer supreme feature film. Edgar Wright’s Ant-Man is scheduled to kick off Marvel’s ‘Phase Three’ on July 17th, 2015 with sequels expected to come for both Thor and Captain America.

By Benjamin Murray


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