Patrick Stewart says a 'reappearance' in MCU might be possible after Doctor Strange cameo
Warning: This article contains spoilers about Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
You'd be truly mad — madder than even the titular multiverse of the Doctor Strange sequel — to read any further if haven't seen Marvel's Multiverse of Madness and are actively trying to avoid spoilers. To liberally paraphrase Wanda Maximoff from WandaVision, "This will be your only warning. Stay out of my article."
If you're still here, a certain someone from that movie is talking about a certain cameo appearance and what it just might mean for the MCU moving forward.
In the second full trailer for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, we heard a voice: "We should tell him the truth." This was followed by a follow-up promo that had the same voice say, "We will see what kind of Doctor Strange you are."
It certainly sounded like Patrick Stewart, the actor who famously played Professor Charles Xavier in the past X-Men movie franchise. Marvel never showed the actor's face at the time, but then the studio basically confirmed his identity without confirming it — even providing a glimpse of the character's classic yellow hover chair as famously utilized by the character in X-Men: The Animated Series.
Now, we can confirm that, yes, Stewart indeed returns as Xavier and he can finally talk about it.
Speaking with EW in an interview pegged to the season 2 finale of Star Trek: Picard, Stewart says he had no idea he would ever play the telepathic mutant again after the original X-Men films, which began with 2000's entry.
"The last [movie] that we did with Hugh Jackman, when the two of us were very, very different people from the characters that you'd met in earlier X-Men movies, I thought that brought down the curtain on my character and Hugh's character very effectively," the actor says of 2017's Logan. "But the world of comic books is much bigger than I ever imagined."
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness sees Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) on a race through parallel dimensions with a young girl named America Chavez (Xochitl Gomez). Wanda (Elizabeth Olsen), who's having a Dark Phoenix moment after being corrupted by the Book of the Damned, wants to kill America and take her power to traverse the multiverse in the hopes of finding a reality where her children are still alive.
In one such alternate reality, specifically the one referred to as 838, Stewart's Xavier is a member of the comics-inspired organization called the Illuminati — a top-secret council formed to solve the problems no one else could.
After purchasing 20th Century Fox, the previous Hollywood keepers of franchises like X-Men and Fantastic Four, Disney started incorporating elements from their new toy box into the MCU. A specific setting in Disney+'s The Falcon and the Winter Soldier was one of them. Multiverse of Madness, however, straight-up went for it and brought out Xavier.
Even though Professor X doesn't exactly get a happy ending in Multiverse of Madness, Stewart has hope for another Xavier reprisal down the line, perhaps in another corner of the multiverse.
"It's possible and likely that there may be even more [appearances]," he says. "I don't expect ever to be Jean-Luc Picard again" — Picard is officially concluding with the upcoming third season — "but there is potential maybe for a reappearance of Professor Xavier."
So far, Marvel hasn't announced a new X-Men movie as part of the MCU. But if anyone will know for certain, it's definitely the telepath in the room.
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