Neil Gaiman shares details about himself and del Toro’s Doctor Strange movie pitch
Sandman producer Neil Gaiman and Hellboy director Guillermo del Toro once offered Kevin Feige the decades-long Doctor Strange film.
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Doctor Strange’s cinematic debut was handled by Scott Derrickson, and its follow-up was helmed by Sam Raimi, but two other creative powerhouses had a hand in bringing the character to the big screen: Neil Gaiman and Guillermo del Toro.
As reported by Heroic Hollywood, Gaiman recently appeared on Josh Horowitz’s podcast, Happy Sad Confused, to discuss the recent Netflix adaptation of his beloved comic series, The Sandman. Speaking with Horowitz, Gaiman revealed he discussed filming Doctor Strange with Marvel chief Kevin Feige at one point: “I remember in 2007, ‘What about Doctor Strange’ with Kevin Feige?
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Gaiman says that his ideas for the Doctor Strange film were largely abstract until he brought them up with filmmaker Guillermo del Toro. At the time, del Toro was coming out of another horror-tinged comic book adaptation, 2005’s Hellboy, and Gaiman believed he would be a good fit for the Doctor Strange film he was developing in his mind. was. As he puts it, “Guillermo and I had these thoughts about Doctor Strange and … starting a conversation with Kevin about ‘I could do Doctor Strange with Guillermo.'” Ultimately, Feige told Gaiman and Dale. Toro that Marvel was ‘not interested in dealing with Doctor Strange right now.
Gaiman and del Toro’s Doctor Strange never made it past their original pitch, but Gaiman says that some of the concepts they discussed still intrigue him. In particular, he says that the film’s chronology would have been fascinating, and very different from the Doctor Strange that audiences eventually saw. “My favorite doctor is weirdo,” he says, “was the idea… the one thing we really wanted to do was have his adventures, have him become an alcoholic and a disordered doctor, all that sort of thing. , takes place in the 1920s.” From there, Strange becomes an immortal magician who guards Greenwich Village for 90 years without changing.
Gaiman’s Doctor Strange pitch was passed in 2007, but the protagonist made it to the Marvel Cinematic Universe in 2016 under the direction of Scott Derrickson. The sequel to Doctor Strange, headed by The Evil Dead and Spider-Man director Sam Raimi, hits theaters in 2022. Both Gaiman and del Toro have moved on to other projects – del Toro’s stop-motion Pinocchio film is later headed to Netflix. year, and Gaiman’s television adaptation of The Sandman hit the streaming service earlier in 2022.
Doctor Strange and its sequel, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, are both streaming on Disney+. The Sandman is streaming on Netflix.
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