Benedict Cumberbatch, who recently spoke about a villain role he turned down in the MCU, attends the Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness LA premiere
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For many Marvel fans, it’s likely difficult to picture Benedict Cumberbatch as anyone other than Dr. Stephen Strange. However, if a conversation with Marvel Studios had gone differently in 2013, that might have been the case. In a recent interview about Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Benedict Cumberbatch revealed he had the chance to play a villain character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe a few years prior to his actual MCU debut. But he took a gamble and turned down the role — here’s why.

Benedict Cumberbatch, who recently spoke about a villain role he turned down in the MCU, attends the Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness LA premiere

‘Doctor Strange 2’ star Benedict Cumberbatch | Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Benedict Cumberbatch made his Marvel debut as Doctor Strange in 2016

Cumberbatch made his first MCU appearance as hero Doctor Strange, a brilliant surgeon-turned-Master of Mystic Arts, in the 2016 film Doctor Strange. From there, the Sherlock star reprised his role in four other Marvel films — Thor: Ragnarok (2017), Avengers: Infinity War (2018), Avengers: Endgame (2019), and Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021). Cumberbatch also voiced Strange in the Disney+ series What If…? (2021). The actor now stars in Doctor Strange 2 (a.k.a. Multiverse of Madness), which hit theaters in early May.

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