rachel mcadams in doctor strange 2

Rachel McAdams is feeling some Strange love. After months of rumors and speculation that the actress wouldn’t be reprising her role in the next Doctor Strange film, McAdams is apparently set to return in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Sam Raimi‘s follow-up to the 2016 Marvel Studios film starring Benedict Cumberbatch as the Sorcerer Supreme. 

Deadline report that Rachel McAdams has closed a deal to reprise her role as Christine Palmer, the colleague and love interest of Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange, in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. This follows months of rumblings that McAdams didn’t intend to return to the franchise — which is not a surprise considering her character was given little to do in the first movie. While we don’t know how big of a role McAdams will have in the follow-up, anything will be better than the 12 minutes of screen time she got in 2016’s Doctor Strange.

But there may not be a chance for McAdams to shine as she rightly deserves. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is one of the most crowded upcoming Marvel films, as Benedict Wong and Chiwetel Ejiofor are also expected to reprise their roles as fellow sorcerer Wong and Strange’s ally-turned-nemesis Karl Mordo, respectively. Elizabeth Olsen is joining as Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch, which has many speculating that she may be the villain of the piece. And Marvel newcomer Xochitl Gomez is also joining the cast.

Then there’s the premise of the film itself, which is set up in its title: Multiverse of Madness. We’ve already got the set-up for a multiverse in the upcoming Spider-Man 3 with tons of Peter Parkers running around, but the Doctor Strange sequel will likely go deeper into this ambitious premise, likely leaving little room for an ordinary surgeon like McAdams’ Christine Palmer. But who knows, maybe Sam Raimi, who took over directing duties from Scott Derrickson after the original filmmaker left the project over creative differences, will know what to do with McAdams. In fact, with McAdams showing off her comedic chops lately in films like Eurovision and Game Night, maybe the frequently loony Raimi will have a blast with McAdams.

But it’s all too soon to tell. We know few concrete details about Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, which begins production after Cumberbatch finishes filming on the next Spider-Man movie, in which the actor is also set to play Doctor Strange. The film is scheduled to star production in May 2021. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is scheduled to hit theaters on March 25, 2022.

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