Doctor Strange was Marvel's latest entry to the MCU — and what a worthy entry it was. Doctor Strange performed wonderfully on its domestic opening, earning a solid $85 million, which is more than both Ant-Man and The Amazing Spider-Man. This kind of cash means that we are more than likely see a sequel for the Sorcerer Supreme in the future.
It would certainly seem that the creative team behind Doctor Strange aren't short of sequel ideas either. #DoctorStrange's director, Scott Derrickson, recently spoke to IGN to talk about what he'd like to see in a sequel:
“I really like the character of Nightmare and the concept that the Nightmare Realm is a dimension. [...] That’s early – that’s like the first Strange tale. I think that’s in the introductory episode of Doctor Strange, and I always loved that."
I think this could make for a solid sequel. Doctor Strange wowed us with its grandeur and spectacle; the sequel would have to live up to this, and the Nightmare realm could be the perfect way to do this. It's not confirmed whether or not Scott Derrickson will be directing the sequel, but given Marvel's track record for keeping directors around for sequels, it seems likely that he will return.
One flaw people took issue with in Doctor Strange was its villain, #Kaecilius, played by the wonderful Mads Mikkelsen (Hannibal). People felt that he was another bland superhero villain that brought nothing new to the table, so I'm sure with this feedback, the Marvel team will be anxious to impress with their next villain — especially when Doctor Strange boasts such an impressive rogues' gallery! Let's take a look at 5 potential villains we could see Doctor Strange take on in the sequel.
** May contain Doctor Strange Spoilers **
1. Baron Mordo
Preferred Actor: Chiwetel Ejiofor
Okay, we're going to start with the obvious choice and get it out of the way. At the end of Doctor Strange, we see Baron Mordo's fatal change of belief, as he betrayed by the Ancient One. It seems that this change of heart at the end of Doctor Strange will catalyze his transformation in Strange's ultimate nemesis, Baron Mordo. It's quite a tragedy seeing such a well-mannered, focused sorcerer like Mordo to turn to the dark side.
Backstory: Baron Mordo is often considered Doctor Strange's first villain, appearing in Strange Tales #111 (one issue after Doctor Strange's appearance). Baron Mordo trained with Strange for years until he turned to the dark side, and trained relentlessly to defeat him and The Ancient One. Mordo went to extreme lengths, like following the ways of Dormammu (who's in the movie, also) to become powerful enough to beat Strange. Mordo is very closely matched with Strange in terms of abilities, but one advantage he has over the #SorcererSupreme is that he often summons creatures, such as demons, to aid him in his mystical battles.
Likelyhood of Appearing: 10/10. Baron Mordo is guaranteed to appear again in the MCU. I'm sure he's going to train somewhere else, become more powerful, maybe learn from Dormammu and try to defeat Strange (and maybe #ScarletWitch too, given that he thinks there are too many sorcerers).
Preferred Actor: Iwan Rheon
You may recognize Iwan Rheon for his dark role on the hit TV series Game of Thrones, or his more subdued role on E4's cult favorite, Misfits. This guy is a very talented actor who is eerily creepy and would be perfect for the twisted role of Nightmare.
Backstory: Nightmare is one of Doctor Strange's major villains and he plays an important part in the mystical side of Marvel. His role as the evil leader of the "Dream Dimension" would perfectly suit the world Doctor Strange has set up in the first movie and visually this twisted, evil dream-realm would look visually gorgeous. Nightmare is a very powerful being who is able to use his power on the subconscious minds of people who are dreaming. This Freddie Krueger-style approach would add an element of horror into the mystical world of Doctor Strange.
Likelihood of Appearing: 9/10. Behind Baron Mordo, Nightmare is the most likely villain we could see in a Doctor Strange sequel — especially since we found out that he was set to appear in the first movie as the villain! In an interview with Empire, director Scott Derrickson said that #KevinFeige made a very "cogent" case on why not to tackle Nightmare in the first installment:
“The trouble with starting with Nightmare is getting across the idea of the Dream Dimension as another dimension. The movie was challenging enough. It’s already an exposition-heavy movie … Dormammu made the most sense. And he is the most present villain in the comics.”
This was great advice from Marvel Studios's President, Kevin Feige, as having Nightmare in Doctor Strange would have overstuffed the movie; the same mistake that Batman v Superman was criticized for. There's no harm in taking your time with to build up a superhero; it's better not to rush storylines.
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Preferred Actor: Eva Green
#EvaGreen is one of most badass actors out there at the moment, and she's being totally under-utillized in Hollywood. I'm surprised she hasn't been cast in a Marvel movie yet, but then again, it's better to wait for the perfect role — enter Umar.
Backstory: Umar is a very powerful Doctor Strange villain who is from a species of energy-based entities. She's a sibling to the all-powerful Dormammu, who we saw in Doctor Strange as the huge villain who got sick of Steven Strange's stubborn ways. Umar is a very intelligent being, who is extremely gifted in the magic arts. She has a vast array of abilities that include: time travel, inter-dimensional teleportation, telepathy and sometimes, mind control. Umar is also a frequent opponent of Doctor Strange's comic love interest, Clea (who I hope turns up in the sequel).
Likelihood of Appearing: 7/10. Umar would be a fantastic addition to a cinematic universe where the villains are always a bit of a let down, especially if a talented actress like Eva Green was attached to the role! If Eva Green wasn't able to take the role, I'd also love to see Game of Thrones's Lena Headey (Cersei) take on the challenge.
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Preferred Actor: Javier Bardem
Javier Bardem is one of Hollywood's most talented actors, who is incredible at making an audience feel uncomfortable with his villainous roles. His outing in James Bond's Skyfall was iconic, and he's my favorite Bond villain to date. Marvel could really do with a talented actor like Javier Bardem to give us a haunting villain that we deserve!
Background: So far in this list, we've discussed some very powerful beings, and Mephisto is no exception. This frightening demon was created in the silver age of comic books, and he's a great villain because he poses such a threat to Doctor Strange and Earth itself. Mephisto is an immortal being, who becomes energized when exposed to evil on the human realm. To put into context how powerful Mephisto is, he once stalemated one of Marvel's most powerful villains, Galactus.
Likelihood of Appearing: 6/10. So far, no director or producer has even mentioned the idea of Mephisto, so for now we're just purely speculating. I'd love to see a villain of Mephisto's power enter the MCU, especially seeing how exciting it was to see the defiant Dormammu appear in the first movie. The only drawback to having somebody like Mephisto is that he could prove too powerful for Doctor Strange, who hasn't even become The Sorcerer Supreme yet!
5. Morgan Le Fay
Preferred Actor: Bryce Dallas Howard
Bryce Dallas Howard has become a very popular actress in Hollywood since her role in the massive hit Jurassic World in 2015, and I think it's time for her to enter the comic-book universe. We know how well she can play a villain, as she was poisonous in The Help (also starring Emma Stone), and I can't think of a better role for her than Morgan Le Fay.
Backstory: Morgan Le Fay is the second villain on our list who is immortal. With so much time on her hands, she devoted herself to the mystic arts. Like everybody else on this list, Morgan Le Fay is incredibly powerful, and she's often regarded as one of the most powerful sorcerers on Earth. One ability she has that I would love to see utilized is her ability to shape-shift into another human or animal, as this sort of thing hasn't been done in the MCU yet! One of her only weaknesses that Strange could utilize is steel, which is because of her half-faerie genes.
Likelihood of Appearing: 6/10. Morgan Le Fay would be a solid addition to the MCU and seeing her abilities on the big screen with dazzling effects would be fantastic.
As you can see, Doctor Strange has a seriously impressive rogues' gallery to choose from for Doctor Strange 2. Personally, I think a female villain would be great. The likes of Morgan Le Fay and Umar are incredibly powerful forces that would pose an interesting threat to Doctor Strange. Although male characters like Mordo and Nightmare are much more likely choices, we'll have to wait until details start emerging about the Doctor Strange sequel to know for sure.