PREVIEW: 'Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness: The Official Movie Special' Book Coming Feb. 14
Writer Michael Waldron explores the dark side in 'Doctor Strange in The Multiverse of Madness' in this exclusive interview excerpt
“We’re trying to give the audience a mind-expanding experience.” – Sam Raimi, Director
Coming this month to bookstores, Marvel Studios’ Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness: The Movie Special will takes fans into the behind the scenes of the hit film Marvel Studios’ Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, where Doctor Strange returns to take audiences on a journey into the unforgettably bizarre as he battles to stop the Scarlet Witch from wiping out millions of lives.
Lavishly illustrated with stunning behind-the-scenes images, Benedict Cumberbatch, Elizabeth Olsen, Xochitl Gomez, Benedict Wong and other members of the cast and crew, including acclaimed director Sam Raimi, reveal the secrets behind the creation of Marvel Studios’ most outlandish film to date.
And we're proud to present an excerpt from the book, featuring an interview with the film's writer, Michael Waldron on exploring the dark side in Marvel Studios’ Doctor Strange in The Multiverse of Madness and why the film is about hope.
INTERVIEW WITH Michael Waldron
When did you start writing Marvel Studios’ Doctor Strange in The Multiverse of Madness?
It was February 2020. Kevin Feige called me and asked me to write it. I loved the first Doctor Strange, so I said, “Hell yeah!”
A week after I started they brought on Sam Raimi. That guy’s movies are part of the reason I became a writer. We walked into a situation where that movie was about to start filming in May; this was February. So we really had to hit the ground running. I think I had three weeks to try and write that first draft. And that last week is when the NBA shut down, Covid hit, and the world stopped spinning. So it was an interesting month…
What makes a Doctor Strange movie?
I think that it’s adventure. When I looked at the character I looked at characters that I love and everything and thought, Okay, who can I draw inspiration from? And who does Benedict Cumberbatch remind me of a little bit playing his character? He’s an investigator of the occult, of mysticism and everything. He’s got kind of a wry sensibility in the face of crazy stuff. He can also really take a punch and get his ass kicked. And I think that’s all stuff that you see Benedict as Doctor Strange do a great job of in all of the other movies he’s in. So, to me, I think it’s a classic adventure movie.
There’s elements of sci-fi. There’s elements of fantasy and all of that big Marvel Cinematic Universe stuff. But the great thing about Doctor Strange is that he’s a regular guy. He has a certain attitude that he carries through all the movies. He is the audience’s perspective on all of the crazy situations, like I’m on a spaceship. What are we doing?
I think that’s always a fun treat for the audience, especially as the MCU is expanding as there’s bigger and crazier stories and we’re going to crazier places to have a hero who is so grounded in his wise cracking humanity. It’s a gift to get to write. And so, with a character like that, you know you’ve got somebody folks are going to love to watch.
As a writer I just thought, Let’s strap him in a rocket and just send him on a ride. And that’s what we tried to do with this movie. Comedy is a huge part of it. I think, the success of these movies is that they’re fun. They don’t’ take themselves too seriously, but they walk a really delicate line. Like when Tony Stark dies it breaks your heart. When Thanos snaps his fingers half the universe disappears. Like that is the brilliance of the world that Kevin Feige and his team have created.
I’ve found that, in these Marvel Studios movies, success for me at least, comes from writing it as a drama. Write it like you’re writing a one-hour drama. And let the comedy come. That’s the great thing about these Marvel Studios movies is rarely does the comedy come from set up/punchline. That’s the stuff that, to me, takes you out of the moment. It makes you feel like you’re not living in the real world. The comedy is more observational, more of a wry observation, you know, a side of just the crazy stuff that we’re dealing with. It’s the stuff that feels natural to the characters. I think if you build great characters, you know, sense of humor can just come organically from them.
Pre-order Marvel Studios’ Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness: The Movie Special and then pick up the book on February 14, 2023 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, Indiebound or wherever you purchase books.
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