When EW spoke with director Scott Derrickson last year on the U.K. set of Doctor Strange (out Nov. 4), the filmmaker explained his determination that the Benedict Cumberbatch-starring movie use visual effects in a very different way from your average superhero saga.
“The general approach is to do set pieces that haven’t been done before,” he said of his movie. “As an audience member, watching superhero movies, I have an appetite to see new kinds of images. When it comes to visual effects, with the big budget movies, it seems like — outside of extreme versions of gunfights, and explosions, and general destruction — there’s not a lot of creativity. You know, we can do anything, and yet this combat and destruction seems to be all that gets done. I really thought Doctor Strange deserved more than that. I thought it deserved to be at least an attempt to do things that are new, and to use the capability of modern visual effects in a way that told the origin story of Doctor Strange, and took that character into an interesting place, but also provide an audience with a lot of things that are unexpected. That was always the goal for me.”
Did Derrickson succeed in his quest? You can, in part, judge for yourself by checking out a new image of Cumberbatch in the film, which seems to find the magic powers-possessing superhero visiting an entirely different dimension. While Derrickson won’t discuss what is actually happening in the image (“It would be a big giveaway for the movie”), he will confirm that much of the inspiration for the shot’s weirdness came from vintage Strange adventures.
“It is the section of the movie that is most directly inspired by the ‘60s and ‘70s Doctor Strange comic book, specifically the Steve Ditko panels that were very psychedelic, and also a blacklight poster from 1971 that I have hanging above my desk at home,” Derrickson said last week when EW caught up with him for this week’s Doctor Strange cover story. “It’s also the banner on my Twitter feed. So those are the visual inspirations for that space and it is all taken directly from the Marvel comic universe.”
See that new image, premiering exclusively here, below.
EW is offering an advance screening of Doctor Strange on Friday, Oct. 28 at EW PopFest. Tickets are available as a bonus to the first 300 two-day VIP tickets sold, so get clicking for your chance to be one of the first people to see the film before it hits theaters. EW PopFest runs from Oct. 29-30 at The Reef in Downtown Los Angeles. For more information and to purchase tickets, go to http://ewpopfest.com/.
To read more on Doctor Strange and EW’s 50 Most Powerful Superheroes, pick up the new issue of Entertainment Weekly on stands Friday, or buy it here now – and subscribe for more exclusive interviews and photos, only in EW.
For more on this week’s cover story, watch EW The Show, available now here, on the new PEOPLE/Entertainment Weekly Network (PEN). Go to PEOPLE.com/PEN, or download the free app on your Smart TV, mobile, and web devices.