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It’s finally official: Benedict Cumberbatch to play Doctor Strange

Sherlock, Smaug, and now Strange. What'll he do next?


Monica Riese

Internet Culture

Posted on Dec 4, 2014   Updated on May 30, 2021, 1:36 am CDT

A full six months after Marvel penned its Doctor Strange wishlist, the rumors have been exchanged for reality: Benedict Cumberbatch is officially on board for the lead role in the project.

The Sherlock/Hobbit star, a popular fixture on Tumblr for his razor-sharp cheekbones and general resemblance to an otter, was welcomed by a Marvel press release late Thursday.

“Stephen Strange’s story requires an actor capable of great depth and sincerity,” said Producer Kevin Feige. “In 2016, Benedict will show audiences what makes Doctor Strange such a unique and compelling character.”

Contract negotiations between Cumberbatch and Marvel reportedly began almost two months ago, despite earlier rumors that Johnny Depp, Tom Hardy, or Jared Leto might’ve snagged the role. While some fans were… well, fans of the arrangement, others were more vocally opposed, citing a certain amount of “Cumberbatch fatigue” which the Daily Dot’s Gavia Baker-Whitelaw expertly explained here.

Of course, Cumberbatch is no stranger to enraged fans; a very long line of disappointed ladies formed after the actor’s engagement announcement last month.

Doctor Strange is slated for a Nov. 4, 2016, release. Also on the docket for 2016 is the ever-popular Deadpool, so there’s bound to be something for everyone.

Photo via bellaphon/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

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*First Published: Dec 4, 2014, 9:13 pm CST