Doctor Strange 2 Designer Confirms Thor's Brother's Cut Appearance

By Aeron Mer Eclarinal Posted:
Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange, Doctor Strange 2 logo

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness featured the live-action debut of the Illuminati, but unfortunately, the team suffered quick deaths at the hands of the Scarlet Witch. Despite that, fans were able to witness the MCU debut of notable members, such as John Krasinski's Reed Richards and Patrick Stewart's Charles Xavier

Although Earth-838's Illuminati was a stacked ensemble, a significant addition was almost featured in the lineup in the form of Balder the Brave. In the comics, Balder is the older half-brother of Thor and one of the bravest of all Asgardian warriors. 

Daniel Craig was reportedly tapped to play Balder the Brave in Multiverse of Madness, but the casting didn't come to fruition. Now, new details about Balder's scrapped role have been revealed. 

Doctor Strange 2 Almost Featured Thor's Brother 

Thor, Doctor Strange 2

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness costume designer Graham Churchyard sat down as a guest on the Phase Zero podcast from Comicbook to talk about the scrapped appearance of Balder the Brave. 

YouTube Channel Heavy Spoilers previously shared details about a deleted scene involving Balder the Brave that was supposed to be included in Doctor Strange 2, saying that Thor's brother would have served as the seventh member of Earth-838's Illuminati. 

Churchyard revealed that the team "got very far designing" Balder the Brave, saying that they were just waiting for Marvel's casting choice: 

"We got very far designing Balder the Brave and then we were waiting, and waiting, and waiting on casting. I took it to a prototype stage, we were kind of in that design thing, getting fabrics together and ideas and waiting for an actor."

Balder the Brave
Marvel Comics

The MCU costume designer also confirmed that Balder "almost made Thor 1, [Thor: The Dark World], and [Thor: Ragnarok]" while also sharing that designs of the character's helmet exist since the first Thor movie. However, Churchyard admitted that the character is not going to make an appearance "anytime soon:"

"Poor Balder the Brave, he almost made Thor 1, and Thor 2, and Thor 3, if I can simplify that. Then, it's just like, 'Yay! He's gonna get an appearance!' Poor guy. I've seen designs Marvel's archive book of Balder's helmet going back to Kenneth Branagh's Thor. So, he's been a long time waiting and I don't think he's gonna make an appearance any time soon."

When Will Thor's Brother Appear?

While it is unknown when Balder the Brave will appear in the MCU, Graham Churchyard's latest confirmation indicates that the character is in the minds of Marvel Studios creatives, potentially hinting that his debut could come sooner rather than later. 

Given the current journey of Chris Hemsworth's Thor, it remains to be seen how Balder would fit in the character's story. Thor: Love and Thunder teased that the God of Thunder was close to retiring, but the threat of Gorr and the arrival of Jane Foster's Mighty Thor changed his mind. 

It's possible that the upcoming MCU sequel would end with Thor on a different path, and that could lead to his discovery of Balder. On the flip side, considering the prominence of New Asgard on Earth, Balder could pay the place a visit in order to reunite with his fellow Asgardians. 

Whatever the case, all signs indicate that Balder could make an appearance soon, and it's only a matter of when. 

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is now streaming on Disney+. 

- About The Author: Aeron Mer Eclarinal
Aeron is a news/features writer and Content Lead for The Direct who has been working for the site since March 2020. From writing about the inter-connectivity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to having an extended knowledge about DC TV's Arrowverse, Aeron's expertise has since expanded into the realm of reality TV, K-drama, animated, and live-action shows from Netflix,  Disney+, Prime Video, MGM+, Peacock, Paramount+, and Max. When he isn't writing and watching all things MCU, Aeron is heavily invested with the NBA (go Celtics!) and occasionally watches thrilling matches in the WWE.