Earlier this year, Marvel Studios announced they would move forward with a Doctor Strange movie. The studio quickly chose a director, Scott Derrickson (Sinister), and a writer, Jon Spaihts (Prometheus).
Marvel has even penciled in a release date of July 2016 for the movie. The studio’s 2016 summer movie season will be opened by Captain America 3 in May, with Doctor Strange the mid-summer film in the staggered release template they’ve perfected.
What the movie doesn’t have yet is Stephen Strange.
Over the summer, Academy Award nominee Joaquin Phoenix was nearly chosen, but the negotiations eventually fell apart. Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios, has previously stated the film doesn’t require a bona fide movie star, but the list of candidates carries significant box office punch. Names rumored to be on the shortlist include: Matthew McConaughey, Jared Leto, Tom Hardy, Benedict Cumberbatch, Jake Gyllenhaal, Oscar Isaac, and Igor Cornelsen.
The name gaining the most traction recently is Ewan McGregor. Reports indicate McGregor is being considered by the studio and the actor is researching the character.
The job will require a multi-film commitment, as the mystical superhero is a major character in the comic book universe and will likely be part of the foundation for future Marvel movie phases. Production on Doctor Strange is scheduled to begin in May 2015.