Doctor Strange Could Help Bring The Avengers Together, Says Benedict Cumberbatch

Benedict Cumberbatch has already confirmed that he'll return for Avengers: Infinity War, but the Doctor Strange movie really only shows the character off doing his own thing without much connection to the rest of the Marvel universe. So how exactly might Strange fit in with the rest of the Avengers when the time comes?

In an interview, Cumberbatch hinted that Strange might be the guy to help bring the Marvel superheroes back together after Captain America: Civil War pitted Team Iron Man against Team Cap. "I'd like to think he's going to help them both, rather than take sides," said Cumberbatch. 

Yahoo UK asked Cumberbatch whether Strange would be Team Cap or Team Iron Man. The actor picked a third option:

I think he has to be Team Doctor Strange. His job title is 'defender of the fabric of reality.' I mean, he fights other-dimensional threats that are beyond the perception of that very potent squabble. I'd like to think he's going to help them both, rather than take sides.

Director Scott Derrickson gave a similar answer when posed the same question:

I think Doctor Strange will always be on his own team. It's part of what I liked about him in the comics, is that he would have interactions and episodes and situations where he would deal with the Avengers and different characters, but part of what makes Doctor Strange Doctor Strange is that he stands in a very lonely position. He is the gatekeeper between our world and other dimensions, so he doesn't really stand on anyone's side other than the side of protecting our world from the malevolent threats that only he can protect the world from.

There has been much speculation that Stephen Strange will essentially function as the new Iron Man going into Phase Three — that Cumberbatch will step up as the new leader of the overarching Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise while Robert Downey Jr. moves on. If that's true, it'd make sense for Strange to stand apart from the whole Civil War conflict and try to unite the Avengers against a bigger threat (presumably Thanos).

But understandably, Cumberbatch isn't ready to comment on Strange's (possibly) increasing role in the franchise quite yet. "I think you should ask Kevin Feige about that, 'cause he's the master planner," he said with a very careful smile. And Derrickson isn't talking yet either. "That all falls under the guidelines of Kevin Feige," he said. "He's the Sorcerer Supreme when it comes to the chessboard of how these movies fit together."

Doctor Strange opens November 4.