The films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe have managed to combine the superhero genre with other cinematographic elements. The ‘thriller’ in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, a heist movie in Avengers: Endgame, martial arts in Shang-Chi, and the legend of the Ten Rings … Now, Marvel Studios goes into horror for the first time with Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. And he does it hand in hand with one of the great producers of the genre: Sam Raimi.
The sequel to Doctor Strange hits theaters on May 6. The film, again with Benedict Cumberbatch as Stephen Strange and Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff / Scarlet Witch, also marks Raimi’s return to the superhero genre after the Spider-Man trilogy starring Tobey Maguire. Also that his last film behind the scenes was Oz: A World of Fantasy in 2013.
Raimi’s career as a producer has been quite horror-focused with titles such as Don’t Breathe, Pray for Us, Deadpool, and Ash vs. Evil Dead … he also directed titles in the genre like Premonition and Drag Me to Hell, and that has ended up leaking into Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
For Olsen, moving into this genre at Marvel is a “leap of faith.” “Each movie has, or each series now, has its own existence and you feel a different energy with each one of them, and this was definitely like making a leap of faith, as we always have to do,” explains the actress in SensaCine.
The interpreter knows what she is talking about since they also had to do that exercise with the Disney+ series Scarlet Witch and Vision. This fiction, the first in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the one in charge of inaugurating Phase 4 of the franchise paid homage to the most important sitcoms in television history.
As Olsen adds:
We took a leap of faith with the sitcoms in ‘Scarlet Witch and Vision.’ There’s also a leap of faith with this kind of darker genre, with Sam in ‘Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
Cumberbatch, for his part, prefers to relax expectations regarding the horror genre. “It’s Sam Raimi, so there’s some horror and scares and Sam Raimi fans are going to love the Sam Raimi moments,” replies the actor. “I think we can’t say it’s totally a horror movie. I really do. Let no one is disappointed, but it’s not called ‘the multiverse of terror,’ it’s ‘the multiverse of madness.’ There is more madness than terror”.
THE ETERNAL DEBATE OF ‘DOCTOR STRANGE 2’
The first reactions to Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness have highlighted the horror of the film. However, while some describe it as a complete genre film, others point more in the same direction as Cumberbatch: that there are only some horror elements.
The debate over whether or not the sequel to Doctor Strange is a horror movie dates back to its announcement at the 2019 San Diego Comic-Con. Scott Derrickson, who directed the first installment of the Marvel sorcerer and, originally, he was going to return in the sequel; had this to say at the famous convention: “We’re going to make the first MCU scary movie. ” The filmmaker was known, prior to his debut in the franchise, for titles like The Exorcism of Emily Rose and Sinister.
Days after Derrickson’s words, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige clarified that fans shouldn’t take the filmmaker’s words at face value. “I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s a horror movie, but as our director Scott Derrickson put it, it’s going to be an MCU movie with scary sequences. ”
In January 2020, it was announced that Derrickson was leaving the direction of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness due to “creative differences”. Later, Raimi joined the project. The rest is history.