Fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) were recently treated to the Captain America: Civil War trailer, which will be the first installment of MCU’s “Phase Three.” The second chapter of Phase Three, Doctor Strange (starring Benedict Cumberbatch), just started shooting.
For anyone unfamiliar with the intricacies of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and its separate “phases,” it is important to realize where Captain America: Civil War and Doctor Strange fit into the broader picture. Beginning with Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk in 2008, Civil War and Doctor Strange will be the thirteenth and fourteenth chapters of the Marvel-based movie franchises that include the Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy films.
Phase One (often referred to as “Phase One: Avengers Assembled”) ended with the first Avengers movie, having already introduced the world to Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, and the Incredible Hulk in the first five films. Phase Two followed the Avengers through the Age of Ultron film and introduced the Guardians of the Galaxy crew and Ant-Man along the way. Phase Three, then, begins where Age of Ultron left off, pitting Captain America against Iron Man in Civil War, followed by the official introduction of Doctor Strange. Spider-Man, Black Panther, Wasp, and Captain Marvel are scheduled to be introduced during Phase Three as well.
As Entertainment Weekly confirmed, Benedict Cumberbatch will play Doctor Strange in the movie of the same name. Cumberbatch is most commonly recognized as the lead in the television program Sherlock. He’s also appeared on the silver screen in 12 Years a Slave, Star Trek Into Darkness, and a recurring role in The Hobbit franchise. Benedict has received a Primetime Emmy Award (Sherlock) and an Academy Award (The Imitation Game) for “Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie” and “Best Actor,” respectively.
According to the official Marvel press release for Doctor Strange, the synopsis is as follows:
“Doctor Strange follows the story of neurosurgeon Doctor Stephen Strange who, after a horrific car accident, discovers the hidden world of magic and alternate dimensions. Doctor Strange is the latest film in Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Phase 3’s goal—over the course of four years and nine films—is to introduce audiences to new heroes and continue the adventures of fan favorites.
No further details about the film have been officially released by Marvel, but there seems to be a consensus about what roles will be played by the confirmed cast members. As Collider reports, Rachel McAdams will play Night Nurse Christine Palmer, Chiwetel Ejiofor will play Baron Mordo, Michael Stuhlbarg has been cast as Nicodemus West, and Tilda Swinton as The Ancient One. Mads Mikkelsen, who previously turned down a role in Thor: The Dark World to be a part of the television series Hannibal, has been confirmed for the movie, although his role is yet unclear, as Cinema Blend noted.
For those who just can’t wait for Captain America or Doctor Strange, there are currently several television series that tie into the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise, including Daredevil and Jessica Jones (created for Netflix) and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter (created for ABC).
Captain America: Civil War is scheduled to be released on May 6, 2016. Doctor Strange is set to be released just less than a year from now on November 4 of next year.
[Image credit Jesse Grant / Getty Images]