Marvel’s Doctor Strange is finally set to start filming next month, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t time to add one more major addition to the cast. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Michael Stuhlbarg is in talks to join Doctor Strange as—spoiler alert!—Nicodemus West. And if that report is true, then Stuhlbarg could have an important connection to Doctor Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and it may indicate which story the movie is using as its basis.
In Marvel’s comic book universe, Nicodemus West was a friend of Strange’s and also the surgeon who saved Strange’s hands after his car accident. Out of concern for Strange, West followed him into the orient and also became a disciple of the Ancient One. However, West did not complete his training before returning to America.
It’s worth noting that West originated in Doctor Strange: The Oath, a 2006 miniseries by Brian K. Vaughan and Marcos Martin that featured Strange’s desperate attempt to locate Otkid’s Elixir and save his friend Wong from cancer. That was also the story in which Strange formed a romantic connection with Linda Carter, a.k.a. Night Nurse. Rachel McAdams is rumored to be playing Christine Palmer, a Night Nurse-supporting character who may be a substitute for Linda Carter in the film. If Marvel is using Doctor Strange: The Oath as the basis for the modern day storyline, it could mean that the role of Wong may be cast soon, too.
Prior to Doctor Strange, Stuhlbarg co-starred in the first four seasons of Boardwalk Empire, and he also appeared in A Serious Man, Steve Jobs, and the upcoming Trumbo. Tilda Swinton and Chiwetel Ejiofor have already been confirmed as The Ancient One and Baron Mordo, respectively. Mads Mikkelsen has not been officially announced as the lead villain of Doctor Strange, but it is likely to happen.
Doctor Strange will cast its spell on moviegoers on November 4, 2016.
Comic fans, are you excited to hear that Stuhlbarg may be joining the cast? Let us know in the comments section below!