Director Scott Derrickson has spent the past few years developing, shooting, and talking-up Doctor Strange. So, how does the filmmaker feel about Marvel’s Benedict Cumberbatch-starring superhero movie now that it has been released and become a box office hit?
“I just feel relieved that it wasn’t terrible,” he laughs. “I just feel relieved that I was not the pilot of a very public disaster. That’s how I feel. Every day, I get up and I’m like, ‘Thank god I didn’t f— that up!'”
Feb. 28 sees the release of the Doctor Strange DVD and Blu-ray, with bonus features including an array of deleted scenes and a blooper reel which shows that the film’s cast of acclaimed thesps — Cumberbatch, Tilda Swinton, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Rachel McAdams, Mads Mikkelsen, and Benedict Wong — like to goof around as much as anyone else.
“Here’s the thing — they’re all really funny people,” says Derrickson. “Chiwetel’s one of the funniest people I’ve been around. Benedict is one of the wittiest people you’ll ever met. Tilda is effervescent joy personified. Rachel is funny. Mads Mikkelsen is funny. There was just a lot of healthy buoyancy to the spirit of that set. I think I ruined a lot of takes by laughing at Benedict. He, in particular, when the camera was rolling, would do things at the end of takes that would make me laugh louder than I wanted to. I think we had to loop some things to get my laughter out of the shot.”
On his director’s commentary, Derrickson notes that his wife is a nurse and he thus took particular care to make sure the film’s hospital scenes were as realistic as possible. So, did this tale of a doctor who gains magical powers pass muster with his partner? “It did pass muster with her!” he says. “We had very good medical experts on set. I think you have to do that. I learned it from her, watching her watch movies, and being so continually insulted by the poor portrayal of medical procedures, and her feeling genuinely offended that nobody respected the profession to portray it correctly. I try to do that with all professions, but when it comes to that profession, I’ve got to be really right.”
Derrickson says he would love to direct a Strange sequel — but literally cannot say when that would start shooting. “I have no idea where it fits in,” he explains. “I’ve sort of been off the grid. I very much needed a break after that. But I’m starting to read TV pilots. I love dramatic television, and I’ve gotten quite a few good offers on really good pilots. I may do a pilot before Doctor Strange 2, if Doctor Strange 2 is going to happen.”
So, Marvel hasn’t called the director to see how his 2018, or 2019, schedule is looking? “Right now, I don’t think the people at Marvel are calling anybody for anything,” he says. “They’re making way too many movies at once right now [to do that]. [Given] how intimately involved they are in the development and shooting and post-production of those movies, they’ve got their hands very full right now.”
Watch the trailer for Doctor Strange, below.
Doctor Strange arrives on Digital HD/3D and Disney Movies Anywhere on Feb. 14 and on Blu-ray 3D, Blu-ray, Digital SD, DVD, and VOD on Feb. 28.