Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness: A Background

Jade Baxendale, Editor-in-Chief

On May 6, 2022, Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness comes to theaters around the world, and I for one, couldn’t be more excited. Many events from previous Marvel projects all lead up to this new movie including Avengers Endgame, Wandavision, Spiderman No Way Home, and of course the first Dr. Strange movie which came out way back in 2016.

With that in mind, here’s what you need to know about the characters starring in this movie before the film comes out in May.

Confirmed cast members so far include Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Stephen Strange, Elizabeth Olson as Wanda Maximoff, aka the Scarlet Witch, and Benedict Wong as Wong. We will also see the return of Rachel McAdams as Christine Palmer and the introduction of a new character from the comics, America Chavez played by Xochitl Gomez.

Dr. Strange, the movie’s namesake

Cumberbatch’s first appearance in the MCU was in Dr. Strange, playing Dr. Strange himself, a surgeon, who after being in a car accident, loses hand function. In order to get it back, he turns to magic and is taught by the ancient one (Tilda Swinton). However, Strange ends up getting caught up in the world of magic and ends up having to save the world. Since then, he has become sorcerer supreme and keeper of the time stone before its destruction in Avengers Endgame. Cumberbatch’s latest appearance as Dr. Strange was in Spiderman No Way Home, performing a spell for Peter Parker (Tom Holland) to make the world forget who he is.

Wanda Maximoff in her full Scarlet Witch outfit

The other lead of the movie, Elizabeth Olson, had her first appearance in the MCU in Avengers Age of Ultron (unless of course, you count a post-credit scene from a previous movie). Her character, Wanda Maximoff, has teetered on the edge of good and evil throughout her journey in the MCU. Originally she was an antagonist in Age of Ultron before ultimately joining the Avengers to help save the world. She joined team Cap in Captain America Civil War and helped save the world yet again in Avengers Endgame. Arguably the strongest Avenger, Wanda’s last appearance was in Wandavision where her grief led her to make mistakes, but ultimately she chose to do the right thing and finally assumed her role as the Scarlet Witch.

The first poster we’ve gotten for the movie

Benedict Wong, who coincidentally plays a character named Wong, first appeared in Dr. Strange. His magic-using capabilities allowed him to also help save the world numerous times, and after the blip, he assumed the role of sorcerer supreme, taking it away from Dr. Strange.

Rachel McAdams’s only appearances in the MCU were in Dr. Strange and What If…?; however, her role in What If…? was as Christine Palmer from another universe so that role has not impacted the universe we know from the MCU (yet). In Dr. Strange, she played Strange’s love interest turned friend.

Xochitl Gomez has not been in any prior MCU project, but her character America Chavez was pulled from the Marvel comics.

Another character important to know from the trailer is the evil Dr. Strange who has yet to appear in the MCU movies but was prominently featured in the Disney+ series What If…?  This Strange is a twisted version of the Dr. Strange we know due to the death of his universe’s Christine Palmer. After numerous attempts to bring her back using corrupted magic, he ultimately ends up destroying his own universe. However, he does have a redemption after he helps save the multiverse with the Guardians of the Multiverse (and basically does all the heavy lifting in that fight).

We don’t know much about where the twisted Dr. Strange will be in Multiverse of Madness but we do know he will be in the movie.