Projects like Loki and Spider-Man: No Way Home may have dipped their toes into the Multiversal waters, but Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is about to take a full-on plunge into this world of reality-bending storytelling. The Doctor Strange sequel will see Benedict Cumberbatch's iconic sorcerer team up with powerful players such as Scarlet Witch and America Chavez.
Also joining the roster in this Multiverse-spanning epic could be any number of rumored Marvel cameos. Among these names, though, is none other than Hollywood veteran Patrick Stewart. The X-Men actor, who brought Charles Xavier (aka Professor X) to life for nearly 20 years, popped up in the most recent MoM trailer, seemingly confirming an appearance for the good professor in the upcoming film.
In typical Marvel fashion, the studio is keeping things close to the vest when talking about Stewart's inclusion in the film. There has been no official word as to if he is even reprising his X-Men role.
This level of secrecy does not look like it is going anywhere, as the people behind Multiverse of Madness continue to play coy when asked about the film's deepest, darkest secrets.
Is That Professor X?
Speaking with Empire, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness producer Richie Palmer hinted at the truth behind Patrick Stewart supposedly appearing in the film's latest trailer.
Almost speaking directly to fans, Palmer quoted the first X-Men film saying, "Are you sure you saw what you saw?:"
“I'll quote the first X-Men movie and say, ‘Are you sure you saw what you saw?'”
"There are infinite versions of these characters," the Marvel producer said. And just because fans "may have heard something familiar" does not mean it's "someone you have seen before:"
“There are infinite versions of these characters, and just because you may have heard something familiar doesn't mean it's someone you have seen before.”
Truly a Multiverse of Madness
It is hard to tell what sort of game Marvel is playing here. It is not like there is any real question if Patrick Stewart was in the MoM trailer. The actor can be heard saying “We should tell him the truth” loud and clear, and it's not like they can hide someone's voice.
But who Stewart is actually playing could be up for debate. Yes, fans see his iconic Professor X haircut (or lack thereof), but this does not mean this is the version of the character audiences came to love in the Fox-produced X-Men films.
In this world of the MCU Multiverse, the term "Variant" has come up quite a bit. Originally seen in Loki, Variants were versions of the same person from different universes (i.e. Kid Loki, Alligator Loki, and Sylvie). So could this be a Patrick Stewart Professor X Variant? Well, it is possible.
And maybe Palmer here is saying more than he actually means. Perhaps THIS version of Charles Xavier is not the one from the Fox universe, but that version of the character is still in the film. Maybe this is a more nefarious Professor X who rules the MCU's Illuminati, while Doctor Strange and co. team up with the Fox Variant of the character to help their cause.
Fans already know the film will include more than one Doctor Strange, so why not more than on Professor X?
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness hits theaters on May 6.