With Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness only a couple of months away and with a recently-released full trailer, anticipation for the film has never been higher. The follow-up to 2016’s Doctor Strange promises to surpass its predecessor in scale alone, and fans are expecting it the multiversal flick to feature plenty of surprises and exciting cameos.
The Doctor Strange sequel is entering the multiverse in a big way. Marvel Studios’ only other live-action dive into alternate universes came with Spider-Man: Far From Home. Still, the MCU has previously explored the multiverse in the animated series What If… ? In fact, one of the most prominent episodes featured Doctor Strange and a variant of himself that the series named Doctor Strange Supreme. With the inclusion of a sinister-looking Strange variant in the Multiverse of Madness trailer, many wondered if What If… ?‘s Strange Supreme made his way into live-action.
The answer appears to be no. Marvel Studios producer Richie Palmer explained in Spring 2022’s D23 Magazine how the film took some inspiration from What If… ? but will seemingly not feature Strange Supreme himself:
After all the decisions he’s made over the years, this movie really shows Stephen reckoning with himself…things get pretty trippy. We love that episode of What If…?, and we hope to do it justice. It shows another version of Doctor Strange – one who let the universe he lived in be destroyed because of his love for Christine. If he was capable of that, for a selfish reason, is that something that our Stephen would be capable of doing, too? We’d like to think, ‘No, our guy’s the hero,’ but you never know.Richie Palmer
While it may be disappointing to some that Strange Supreme will not actually have a live-action appearance, it does seem like the What If… ? episode certainly did not go unnoticed, and its strong themes of self-identity, grief, desperation, and the line between good and evil will likely be in play for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.