Following the most improbable superhero movie casting news ever, yesterday Deadline confirmed that Chiwetel Ejiofor will co-star alongside Benedict Cumberbatch and Tilda Swinton in Doctor Strange as Baron Mordo, Stephen Strange’s frenemy turned arch-nemesis. Marvel is just lousy with Barons (see also: Barons Zemo and von Strucker, respectively), and this Baron is a magical-type dude who trained under the Ancient One, the same mentor as Strange. When the Ancient One named Strange, not Mordo, as the next Sorcerer Supreme of Earth, Mordo flipped his sh*t and became a supervillain. In the movie, of course, the Ancient One will be played by Tilda Swinton, so this means that when the movie Ancient One passes over Ejiofor’s Mordo in favor of Cumberbatch’s Strange, what will ensue is the most elegant comic book movie conflict to date.
As you have no doubt realized by now, Doctor Strange some batsh*t nutty stuff, and Marvel is already making some big changes to the mythology, which will only be noticed by hardcore nerds (like the person who yelled at me for abbreviating it as “Dr. Strange” in the last post). Deadline includes the detail that for the movie, Mordo will actually be an amalgam of characters from the Strange roster, and that he may be more ambiguous than outright bad. Sounds like they’re setting Mordo up for multiple appearances as an antagonist a la Loki. I’m 100% down for this as Chiwetel Ejiofor is a f*cking boss. With Swinton, Cumberbatch, and now Ejiofor starring, Doctor Strange is the most interesting superhero movie on the board right now. What is in that script that it’s attracting this level of talent?