The Cinematic History of Doctor Strange

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Doctor Strange is finally set to hit the big screen this November (at least in the U.S. New Zealand gets to see him October 20th and the U.K opening is October 28th.)

imageIt has been over twenty years since Doctor Strange was initially listed as pre-production and comic fans rejoiced. Without ever hitting the screen this movie has had more reboots than Spider-Man.

1986Bob Gale (Back to the Future) had written a script that was listed as pre-production but it never went any further. In 2004 IGN even did a review on the script.

1989Alex Cox (Repo Man) co-wrote another script with Stan Lee which was scrapped when Regency Films, who was distributed by Warner Brothers ran into a marketing dispute with Marvel.

1992 – Full Moon Entertainment (Puppet Master) released Doctor Mordid, a B-movie that few have heard of. This movie was originally supposed to be an officially licensed Doctor Strange Movie. Unfortunately the studios license expired before it was complete, so they carried on anyhow and just changed a few things. Neurosurgeon turned mystic Stephen Strange became a Wizard from outer space known as Anton Mordid.

1992Wes Craven had signed on with Savoy Pictures for a film to be released in 1994/1995. This script and movie just seemed to have faded away into non-existence. Knowing Cravens style, the movie was probably too slasheresque for Marvel to allow.

1995David S. Goyer(Batman Begins) completed a script for Doctor Strange, but in his own words it didn’t go very well

1997 – Columbia Pictures purchased the film rights and had Jeff Welch working on the script. They even had Bernie Brillstein(Blues Brothers) and Brad Grey lined up as producers/

2001 – Dimension Films acquired the rights in June and David Goyer re-appeared on the Doctor Strange front. He revealed in an interview that he was in early talks with Marvel about writing and directing the film, that never happened though as the film rights were turned over to Miramax later that summer.

2003 – Miramax announced that there would be a 2005 Doctor Strange Movie. There were also rumors circulating that Neil Gaiman (Stardust) paired up with Guillermo del Toro (Hellboy)and pitched an idea at Marvel.

2004 – Despite announcing a release date of 2005 it was disclosed that Miramax did not have a script, or even a writer.

2005 – The movie rights were acquired by Paramount Pictures and was projected to have a budget of about $165 million….and there it sat.

2013 – Marvel Studios President, Kevin Feige confirmed that Doctor Strange would make an appearance at some point in the MCU. He also confirmed that there was a feature film in development.

2014 – It was reported that Marvel was looking at several directors. The Hollywood Reporter also indicated that there was another script rewrite under consideration by Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger (Kung Fu Panda) and then in June Scott Derrickson was chosen as the director.

And finally after, after almost 30 years, the Doctor Strange movie we have been waiting for has come to fruition. It’s been a long journey for our neurosurgeon turned mystic, lets hope it is worth it.

If you haven’t seen the trailer check it out