Put Neil Gaiman in the same sentence with Guillermo del Toro and you’re pretty guaranteed to feel the Force of thousands of fankids perking up and responding to that siren call from around the world. So you can imagine what happened when Gaiman responded to fellow writer Kurt Busiek‘s tweet the other day with this gem:
Over the last seven years or so, interest in the Doctor Strange film adaptation has been bandied about across the internet, and fan-favorites Gaiman and del Toro have been mentioned off and on. What this new admission implies is that their interest was not only piqued by the story and the idea of collaborating on it, but that perhaps a concept was fleshed out enough to be pitched to Marvel back in the day.
For a little context, Gaiman told the now defunct Premiere in 2008: “Last year I was out in Budapest for three weeks on the set of Hellboy II with Guillermo, and I mentioned to him that I’ve been in very very early sort of “I would to do this” talks with Marvel about doing a Dr. Strange movie, and Guillermo’s reaction was, “Neil, I want to direct it!” [doing Guillermo del Toro imitation] being wonderfully Guillermo and getting all excited and having all sorts of magical and wonderful ideas about this, and Marvel, I think, were very excited too.”
He went on to explain that, given the highly in-demand nature of both his schedule and Guillermo del Toro’s, the film just wasn’t in the cards. It seems as though most fans simply read about the above conversations and assumed that schedules stopped the two creators from ever developing any kind of pitch or production that they might move forward with. Thank you, Neil Gaiman, for being so wonderfully connected to the world wide web and giving us this further insight into the story.
Marvel may not have opted to go with a Doctor Strange by Neil Gaiman and directed by Guillermo del Toro back then, but I’ll be pretty excited to see Benedict Cumberbatch in the Scott Derrickson-helmed production that will hit theaters next November.
What do you think could have happened in a del Toro/Gaiman joint? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!
HT SlashFilm / Image via Marvel