While Benedict Cumberbatch’s sequel may not have had as many Multiverse shenanigans as expected, the film did explore one fun concept - the Illuminati.
After arriving on Earth-838, the story introduced the powerful team of heroes protecting that reality. The group consisted of Professor X, Reed Richards, Captain Carter, Captain Marvel, Black Bolt, and Master Mordo.
However, some previously released concept art showed another key character who was originally planned to be a part of the fun: Balder the Brave. Not only that, but Daniel Craig was rumored to have been in the role.
Looking at the aforementioned concept art, there is an undeniable likeness to Craig—but the actor himself has never addressed the claims.
Thankfully, that’s now changed.
Was Daniel Craig Ever in Doctor Strange
In an interview with Happy Sad Confused's Josh Horowitz, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery star Daniel Craig commented on the rumors of him having once been set to play a brief role in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
After being asked if he'd ever heard of the character of Balder the Brave, the character in which the actor was rumored to play, Craig hesitantly respond, "No."
However, when the alleged reports of him being in Doctor Strange were directly mentioned by Horowitz, the actor took the opportunity to take a sip of his drink and hide behind the mug.
He then, suspiciously, responded with, "I don't know what you're talking about."
While Horowitz wasn't going to get a confirmation out of Craig, he did go on to ask if the actor would take a job as part of the MCU in the first place:
"I would take any job if the hours were good (laughs)... sure, absolutely. Yeah, definitely."
When asked about those same rumors in a separate interview with BBC Radio 1's Ali Plumb, the actor stated that he "[doesn't] know where these [rumors] come from:"
"It's all rumor... I mean, I don't know where these things come from. It's a lot of lockdown craziness."
Balder the Denier
It’s not surprising Craig would deny these rumors—after all, that is the Marvel way. Maybe he even got some tips from Spider-Man actor Andrew Garfield.
With Balder's concept art baring Craig’s likeness, that alone is confirmation enough that he was at least officially considered for the role. Sometimes those artists create those sketches and keyframes with the likeness of specific actors as requested by the studio.
To add to the evidence that Craig almost briefly entered the MCU, a previous tweet from The Hollywood Report’s Justin Kroll revealed how the actor opted out of Multiverse of Madness at the time of filming due to a spike in COVID.
However, it’s clear that Craig has nothing against the MCU. In fact, the actor seems more than open to working with Marvel Studios.
So, honestly, it may only be a matter of time before he joins the party in some capacity.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is now streaming on Disney+.