Chiwetel Ejiofor To Be Magic Negro In Doctor Strange
Chiwetel Ejiofor, the Academy Award nominated actor from 12 Years A Slave who is so good he is sure to win an Oscar for a considerably worse film to make up for the snub, has been confirmed by Deadline to play opposite Benedict Cumberbatch in the upcoming Doctor Strange.
Marvel Studios has been on the road less traveled of late, taking advantage of the staggering success of their A-list franchises, and using them to make room for their lesser known characters. Rather than simply remake Iron Man and Thor a dozen times, Marvel is using its previous successes to push characters like Daredevil, Black Panther, Ant-Man, Doctor Strange, and even Phil Coulson to the forefront. 20 years ago, superhero properties were so poorly respected they tried to give us Shaquille O’neal as a literal poor man’s Superman substitute who couldn’t even fly. Now we get Oscar-caliber talent playing magical bad guys.
Ejiofor is slated to play Baron Mordo, a villain introduced way back in 1963, though the rumor is he will play some sort of amalgamation of Mordo and other characters from the Doctor Strange universe. Changes to the character seem obvious considering Baron Mordo is a sorcerer from Transylvania and Chiwetel Eijofor is an actor from the UK, where it seems all great actors come from including powerhouse actress Tilda Swinton who has also been announced as part of this film. With this much on screen talent, I don’t know whether director Scott Derrickson expects this is going to be his easiest job ever, or is hyperventilating in church every day praying he doesn’t screw this up.
Either way, the world of weirdness and horror that is Doctor Strange is ripe for exploration. We’ve got black magic, strange worlds, Lovecraftian terrors, and a doctor with a god complex complete with his snarky butler. That sounds like it would be a great movie even with terrible actors.
Doctor Strange opens on November 4, 2016.