Doctor Strange Horror Influences

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is slated to arrive in theaters early in the summer of 2021, and it will bring some horror to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. More specifically, Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige says it will draw inspiration from the horror of the 1980s, the kind that Steven Spielberg brought to the big screen with Raiders of the Lost Ark or Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom that offered scares and adventure hand-in-hand.

Find out what Feige had to say about the Doctor Strange horror headed our way, as well as a tease of some unexpected characters who will enter the MCU in the mystical sequel.

During a recent appearance at the New York Film Academy (via SyFy Wire), Kevin Feige briefly discussed the return of horror director Scott Derrickson (Sinister, The Exorcism of Emily Rose) to the MCU with Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. The Marvel boss confidently said, “Multiverse of Madness is the greatest title we’ve ever come up with, by the way, which is one thing that’s exciting about it.” What else is exciting about it? Feige went on to talk about how the movie will bring horror to the MCU:

“I wouldn’t necessarily say that’s a horror film, but it is, as Scott Derrickson — our director — has pitched it, a big MCU film with scary sequences in it. When I was a kid in the ‘80s, Spielberg did an amazing job [doing that]. There are horrifying sequences in Raiders [of the Lost Ark] that I would, as a little kid, [cover my eyes] when their faces melted. Or Temple of Doom, of course, or Gremlins or Poltergeist. These are the movies that invented the PG-13 rating, by the way — they were PG and they were like, ‘We need another [rating].’ But that’s fun, it’s fun to be scared in that way and not a horrific, torturous way, but in a way that is legitimately scary because Scott Derrickson’s quite good at that. But scary in the service of an exhilarating emotion.”

So we might not be talking about pure horror that you’d see in films like The Conjuring, Hereditary, or Halloween, but rather scary moments that come along in a larger adventure through something we don’t quite have a grasp on. We’re talking about scenes like the face melting in Raiders of the Lost Ark, creatures melting in Gremlins…mostly things melting in a grotesque way.

If you think about it, we’ve probably already been given a taste of the kind of horror we’ll see in the Multiverse of Madness. The multiverse sequence from the first Doctor Strange where The Ancient One opens Stephen Strange’s mind’s eye to everything around him featured some rather trippy and unsettling sequences. If you need a reminder of that, which includes the creepy shot at the top of the page, here you go:

Beyond the horror of it all, Feige also teased something else that fans can expect – or rather, aren’t expecting at all:

“The next Doctor Strange film, for instance, features some new MCU characters that will be making their debut in that movie. You won’t expect or won’t guess who it is, but we found a cool way to make it work because we want to make a particular type of movie there. And there was a character we always wanted to do something who we think will fit really well there.”

Hmmm. A character that we won’t expect and we won’t even guess who it is? That’s quite a challenge. Could we possibly see someone from the X-Men making an appearance? Could this provide an opportunity for Deadpool to crossover and create some chaos? Could this allow for an introduction of a character like Moon Knight? Or maybe it’s just some obscure character that Marvel Comics fans never thought they would see on the big screen. We already know that the forthcoming Disney+ shows WandaVision and Loki will have direct ties to this sequel, so maybe it’s something connected to those shows. The possibilities are endless. Any other ideas?

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is slated to arrive in theaters on May 7, 2021.

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