Elizabeth Olsen has been playing Wanda/Scarlet Witch for over half a decade dating back to 2015’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” but it’s only after “WandaVision” that she’s feeling empowered to exert more ownership over her character. During an oral history of the MCU series for Rolling Stone, Olsen revealed “WandaVision” made her “feel more confident” playing Scarlet Witch going into the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Olsen is reprising the character opposite Benedict Cumberbatch in Sam Raimi’s “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.”
“Working on ‘Dr. Strange’ immediately after, I just feel like my instincts are right,” Olsen said about coming off “WandaVision.” “It feels the way you want to feel all the time, which is kind of hard when you have such little screen time and everything that’s happening not on the page is in your head and not in the writer’s head.”
Olsen’s confidence extends to having more creative control over all things Scarlet Witch, including that ever-changing accent that has often been criticized, mocked, and discussed on social media. It’s been known for a while that the Russo Brothers clamped down on the character’s “Age of Ultron” accent for “Captain America: Civil War,” but now it sounds like Olsen is calling the shots more when it comes to finding the right accent for the character post-“WandaVision.”
“[The accent change] started with ‘Civil War’ because the Russos said, ‘Can she just have a softer accent, because she’s been in America, and has to have been speaking English more,'” Olsen said. “So I was like, sure. I do have to say that in ‘Dr. Strange,’ after the experience she has in ‘WandaVision,’ she goes back to an accent that’s more true to her. Now that I feel a little bit more ownership of the character, I feel like she does retreat back to having this more honest expression. The sitcom part was totally different, because she’s trying to hold on to an American sitcom world and play the part the best she can.”
As for what her “Doctor Strange 2” co-star Cumberbatch had to say about “WandaVision,” Olsen said, “He had really positive things to say about how the show ended up. They showed it to him, I think, before it all aired. I didn’t really know what was happening in Dr. Strange until just before we got back to shooting [the film] during the pandemic in September. That was my first time getting to hear my role. And I was a little nervous that I wouldn’t be able to change certain things in WandaVision in order to support what’s going to happen in Dr. Strange. For any actor, that lack of control can be tough. But he said it is really this perfect journey that you watch her go through, in order to be invested in Dr. Strange, too. So that made me feel good, because I do feel that way myself. I feel we’ve managed to make it make a lot of sense.”
All episodes of “WandaVision” are now streaming on Disney+. Disney and Marvel Studios’ “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” opens in theaters March 25, 2022.