We’ve been sat in the waiting room for some time to find out what the crack is with Joaquin Phoenix and that rumoured Doctor Strange role. Now Deadline have delivered the bad news that the Inherent Vice star won’t be going for the gig and instead Marvel are going to have to look for a different practitioner of the mystic arts instead.

As great a choice as he would have been, it seemed incredibly surprising that he had even decided to sit down with the studio to discuss the Eye of Agamatto and possible Avengers team-ups (the doc has been in and out of the super team in past story arcs). Admittedly there seemed a rather universal niggling that he wouldn’t accept it, purely for the multi-picture deals that he would undoubtedly have to commit to, now that offer will have to pass for someone else. But who could take the mantle of the Sorcerer Supreme? Marvel were already aiming high with Phoenix and there are already rumours circulating that Ethan Hawke could be next in line, which would make sense with him having already worked with the film’s director Scott Derrickson on Sinister.

A tale of mystery and magic, Doctor Strange will tell the story of high-level surgeon Steven Strange, who is unable to take his talent any further when his hands are severely injured in a near fatal car crash. Willing to go to any limit to return to his former profession, Steven travels to the Himalayas in the hope he can sort himself out. Instead he meets a mysterious man known as The Ancient One, who teaches him mystic arts he must use to battle foes from an alternate dimension, finding his new calling as our protector.

Whoever takes the job will have to get a wriggle on considering that Marvel already have a date marked in their calendar for the films release, with the hopes of the doctor checking in at July 8, 2016. Expect an array of names to start cropping up in the coming weeks.


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