For decades, Fox laid claim to the film rights for the Fantastic Four and the X-Men, which happened to encompass some of the most significant characters in the Marvel universe. With these rights now firmly secured under Disney, fans are eager to see these mistreated heroes enter the MCU, and that looks to be getting started with the Fantastic Four.
Under the umbrella of the Fantastic Four comes more than just Marvel's First Family - there's also Doctor Doom and Galactus, two of the most powerful and iconic villains under Marvel's umbrella. The road to the Destroyer of Worlds may be a long one, but rumors and teases have begun to mount to suggest Doctor Doom may be right around the corner.
Radio and television personality Howard Stern seemingly accidentally revealed that he'll be working on a Marvel Studios project involving Doctor Doom over the summer. The leak follows rumors from Bleeding Cool suggesting Doctor Doom will have a minor role in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever as interference from the Latverian ruler proves to be the starting point for the Wakandan-Atlantian war.
Fans Speculate on Doctor Doom in Black Panther 2
Fans have reacted to the news of Doctor Doom's rumored inclusion in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever with theories as to how the Supreme Leader of Latveria (a fictional Eastern European nation) could fit into the highly-anticipated sequel ahead of Marvel Studios' Fantastic Four.
@dano_cosmic speculated Stern to be referring to a Black Panther 2 post-credit scene due to the low chances of Fantastic Four or a Doctor Doom project filming this summer:
"If it’s for him playing Doom (it’s not), seems could only be for a post-credit scene in Black Panther 2 (since it’s wrapped I believe). Does anyone think an unannounced Doom project or Fantastic Four project could be filming this summer? Not buying it."
@CameltoeKelly also pointed out there is currently no evidence of a Doctor Doom project being in development before theorizing about Stern possibly interviewing the Eastern European ruler:
"First of all there’s no Doctor Doom movie on the horizon. The Fantastic Four movie needs to happen first. Second…if this is true at all, it would be a cameo where he’s interviewing Dr. Doom in a Fantastic Four movie or for the next Black Panther movie where Doom could appear."
@D21Beast similarly theorized Stern to be filming for a Wakanda Forever post-credits scene in which he interviews a rival royal to discuss current events after Wakanda and Atlantis go to war:
"It's NOT a Doom movie. It's the B. Panther 2 post-credits. After BP2 features the Kingdoms of Wakanda/Atlantis going to war, there's a post-credit tease with Howard Stern introducing a rival royal to discuss current events. Doom's name is spoken. We don't see him."
@MasterDesperado revealed their concerns for Black Panther 2 as the introductions of Atlantis, Namor, Ironheart, and possibly Doctor Doom may leave "no time for Wakanda:"
"They’re introducing Atlantis & Namor, Riri Williams, and (possibly) Dr. Doom in this movie, there’s no time for Wakanda in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever."
@Flea_Breeland shared their feeling Doctor Doom may appear in the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever post-credits scene:
"got a feeling we might see doctor doom in black panther wakanda forever post credit scene."
Will Doctor Doom Appear in Black Panther 2?
Victor von Doom, aka Doctor Doom, has always been closely associated with the Fantastic Four, especially on the big screen as the rights to the Latverian ruler were previously held up at Fox. Those more familiar with Marvel Comics are aware Doom's reach stems far beyond Marvel's First Family due to immense power and connections to all corners of the comic book world.
With Fantastic Four yet to recruit a director to replace Jon Watts or even announce a cast, there's virtually no chance of the MCU reboot shooting this summer. Many took this to mean Howard Stern was referring to his involvement with a Doctor Doom project, with some even fearing the host may be in line to play the character, but the odds of either are slim.
Marvel Studios often films its post-credits stingers after production has wrapped, so perhaps Black Panther 2 will shoot further scenes during the summer. Doctor Doom could be introduced in the post-credits scene of Black Panther 2 similarly to how Charlize Theron's Clea appeared in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
With Wakanda, Latveria, and Atlantis being fictional nations in the Marvel universe, establishing conflict between the three in Black Panther 2 makes a lot of sense. Especially since Doom puppet-mastering a war between the other two for his own benefit is perfectly in-line with the character.
Of course, that would imply Doctor Doom has already met Reed Richards, mastered his magical and scientific abilities, and returned to Latveria in an iron suit as its ruler in the MCU. Naturally, this skips over much of the story most would expect to be told in Fantastic Four, unless that film is a prequel.
There have yet to be any solid reports regarding any actor being attached to Doctor Doom in the MCU, but maybe one will be announced this month at San Diego Comic-Con. Hailing from the fictional country of Latveria, Doctor Doom is European, and as such many are eager to see an actor from that background tackle the role.
Both originating from Denmark, Hannibal's Mads Mikkelsen and Game of Thrones' Nikolaj Coster-Waldau are two popular European fan casts for Doctor Doom, even with Mikkelse having already been in 2016's Doctor Strange. From other parts of the world, Peaky Blinders' Cillian Murphy and X-Men's Michael Fassbender have also been suggested for the role by many.
Only time will tell what the future holds for Doctor Doom in the MCU, but his arrival can't be far away with Fantastic Four just a few years away. For now, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will hit theaters on November 11.