Joaquin Phoenix in a Marvel movie? That’s pretty “Strange.”
The Oscar-nominated “Her” and “The Master” actor is reportedly the frontrunner to play superhero Stephen Strange in “Doctor Strange,” the upcoming Marvel movie about an arrogant neurosurgeon whose hands are ruined in an accident, leading him to the end of the earth on a quest for recovery — resulting in his appointment as the Sorcerer Supreme.
The Wrap cites “multiple sources” naming Phoenix as the frontrunner for “Strange,” though the report cautions that “there is no deal in place yet.” Many fans are expecting an official announcement at Marvel’s San Diego Comic-Con panel on Saturday night, so official confirmation could come any day now.
This isn’t Phoenix’s first dance with a major comic book movie role. Previously, Phoenix was rumored to be up for Lex Luthor in “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,” before Jesse Eisenberg landed the role, and before the movie had an official title.
If Phoenix lands the role of Stephen Strange, he’ll be at the center of one of Marvel’s most long-developing properties; Marvel head honcho Kevin Feige has long expressed his desire to make a “Doctor Strange” movie, and it seems likely that the film will finally arrive in 2016.
“He’s a great, original character, and he checks the box off this criteria that I have: he’s totally different from anything else we have, just like ‘Guardians of the Galaxy,’” Feige told MTV about “Doctor Strange” back in a 2013 interview. “He’s totally different from anything we’ve done before, as is ‘Ant-Man,’ which keeps us excited.”
“Doctor Strange” will be directed by “Sinister” filmmaker Scott Derrickson.