EXCLUSIVE: Here’s some hot superhero dish to take into the weekend. There are reports tonight that Peyton Reed and David Wain are being considered for Ant-Man, but man, we are progressing down the comedy director food chain, and this is starting to feel stale. So how about Doctor Strange? Marvel is putting together its cast list, and I’m hearing that Tom Hardy and Benedict Cumberbatch are on it. While Marvel has teased this property with mentions in films including Captain America: The Winter Soldier, the film solidified and felt urgent when Scott Derrickson tweeted this week that he will direct the script by Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer.
The character has been around since the early 1960s, during that crazy period where just about all the spandex-clad heroes in all the Hollywood blockbusters were hatched at Marvel Comics headquarters (that might be a movie). Stan Lee and Steve Ditko created the character in 1963 as a neurosurgeon who serves as the Sorcerer Supreme, protecting Earth against magical and mystical threats with powers of sorcery, mysticism, and martial arts. Marvel’s Kevin Feige is producing. These two guys aren’t the only ones in the mix, but let’s face it, they are both poised to become major stars. Hardy, by way of playing Bane in The Dark Knight Rises, is closer. He just starred in the superb Steven Knight-directed drama Locke, and he wrapped Child 44 and Mad Max: Fury Road. Cumberbatch, coming off August: Osage County and 12 Years A Slave, next will be seen starring in the Morten Tyldum-directed Imitation Game, which The Weinstein Company opens on November 21 during Oscar season. Both of them have been lining up movies left and right, so scheduling might be an issue. We’ll see who Marvel ultimately lands, but it’s hard to go wrong either way here if one of these guys get the job.