Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is set to push the concept of alternate realities to the forefront of the MCU. Directed by Sam Raimi, the upcoming MCU sequel will see the return of Benedict Cumberbatch as the fan-favorite sorcerer, and he will be joined by Benedict Wong, Rachel McAdams, and Chiwetel Ejiofor.
As expected, plot details about the film are still being kept under wraps, but it was confirmed by Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige that Strange will be joined by another Avenger in the form of Elizabeth Olsen's Scarlet Witch. This marks the first team-up of the two characters, and fans are already hyped about the idea.
Based on previous reports, there's a good chance that production for Multiverse of Madness is now underway. Cumberbatch shared in an interview that filming for the sequel will start in “late October or early November” while Olsen pointed out that shooting for her scenes will start this month.
And now, an interesting tidbit about the film's production has emerged.
In a special virtual panel for The Mauritanian, Doctor Strange actor Benedict Cumberbatch can be seen with his facial hair grown out, and this could indicate that the actor is already gearing up for his role as the Sorcerer Supreme in the Multiverse of Madness or even Tom Holland's Spider-Man 3.
For Cumberbatch's previous MCU roles like Doctor Strange and Avengers: Infinity War, the actor didn't grow out his facial hair. Instead, he utilized “glued-on” prosthetics for Stephen Strange's goatee.
WHAT THIS MEANS
Cumberbatch is a renowned actor, and the fact that his facial hair was grown out goes to show his dedication to his MCU role. Based on what's been revealed about the production timeline of Doctor Strange 2, this new image of Cumberbatch provides strong evidence that the project is now deep into filming.
The veteran actor has portrayed the role of the Sorcerer Supreme four times already, starting from his debut during 2016's Doctor Strange. Since then, the crew behind his MCU films only used “glued-on” prosthetics for his appearances, but it looks like the tradition of doing so will be broken given this reveal.
The Multiverse of Madness is one of the intriguing entries of the ambitious Phase 4 slate of the MCU. Given that, the sequel is poised to change the landscape of the interconnected narrative of the franchise, ultimately giving a much bigger role to Cumberbatch's Doctor Strange for the foreseeable future.
As it is, it's only fitting to see Cumberbatch getting more comfortable with his MCU persona since fans will definitely see the character numerous times in different projects down the road.