I’m largely indifferent to the ever expanding Marvel Cinematic Universe, but I have to admit that the cast of “Doctor Strange” is looking ridiculously stacked. Even the snootiest cinephile who doesn’t know their Iron Man from their Superman would be hard pressed not to show interest, and the ensemble has just added yet another exciting name.
The excellent Michael Stuhlbarg, currently playing Andy Hertzfeld in Danny Boyle‘s “Jobs,” has joined Benedict Cumberbatch, Rachel McAdams, Tilda Swinton, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Mads Mikkelsen in the picture. Damn! The actor will be taking the role of Nicodemus West, who has a complicated history with the titular character, so I’ll let Marvel Wikia do the heavy lifting:
Dr. Nicodemus West was a long time admirer of Dr. Stephen Strange’s surgical abilities. Dr. West performed the surgery that saved Strange’s hands but leaving him with severe nerve damage following his automobile accident. Racked with guilt over robbing the world of Strange’s medical service, Nicodemus followed Strange to Kamar-Taj arriving only days after Strange had completed his mystical training and departed. Concerned that Strange may not rise to the challenge of becoming the Sorcerer Supreme, the Ancient One elected to begin training Nicodemus in the mystic arts. After learning some of the essentials of mystic healing, Nicodemus departed Kamar-Taj without completing his training. Nicodemus was able to heal a young girl injured in a small town on the Tibet-India border. However, after returning to New York City, Dr. West attempted to heal Reginald Pavlish but resulted in his death. Fearing the repercussions of using magic, West accepted a position C.E.O. of Timely Pharmaceuticals on the conditions they protect him from the consequences of Pavlish’s death and stop him from using any more magic.
West continued to keep tabs on Strange, and when he learned Strange had acquired Otkid’s Elixir, he sent Brigand to break into the Sanctum Sanctorum and steal it. The theft ultimately resulted to the death of West and destruction of nearly all of Otkid’s Elixir.
Obviously, some or all of that may change in the big screen incarnation, but that’s what you need to know presently. “Doctor Strange” opens on November 4, 2016. [Variety]