- Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness missed a major opportunity for cohesion in Phase Four by not including a cameo from Spider-Man as originally planned due to COVID-related changes.
- The canceled plan could have elevated both films and improved connectivity within the MCU, as Doctor Strange and Spider-Man had the best on-screen chemistry within the franchise at that point.
- While both characters have seemingly concluded their recent adventures, there is still a possibility that they may interact again in future projects, providing fans with another chance to see their dynamic.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness nearly featured a Spider-Man cameo that might have brought higher cohesion to the franchise’s Phase Four films if things had gone as initially intended.
Releasing as one of the last projects of Phase 4, Doctor Strange 2 followed the titular character on a multiversal mission to protect America Chavez from the now-antagonistic Scarlet Witch, who set out to capture America and extract her ability to move between universes. The film was a massive success but seemed disconnected from other Phase 4 projects despite the multiverse being a key plot point in the film. Even the best cameos in Doctor Strange 2 didn’t seem to lead anywhere, with the Scarlet Witch dying at the end and John Krasisnksi revealing that he was unlikely to return as the Fantastic Four leader.
However, another planned cameo for the film might have solved the cohesion problem many fans complained about when reviewing Phase Four. During an LRM Online interview with MCU prop master Graham Churchyard, the Marvel staffer revealed that there was supposed to be a cameo featuring an updated Sorcerer Supreme and Chavez in an earlier MCU project and a return visit from Tom Holland’s Spider-Man. “Doctor Strange and his new costume and America Chavez were supposed to go into Spider-Man,” Churchyard revealed during the interview. “And Spider-Man was supposed to come in for a very brief cameo appearance in Multiverse. Then COVID just shook it all up.”
The Spider-Man project in question is Phase Four’s Spider-Man: No Way Home, which set overseas box office records on Day 1 of its release and ended its run as the year’s highest-grossing film. The COVID pandemic negatively affected several projects that would be released within the 2020-2022 window, and fans know it was also to blame for some of the lack of cohesion in the Phase Four projects. While there are still some subtle references in Doctor Strange 2, the mutual cameos would have gone a long way to give a proper sense of connectivity to the Doctor Strange sequel, with Stephen Strange already integral to the plot of the Spider-Man film.
The canceled plan was a missed opportunity, as the MCU’s Doctor Strange and Spider-Man had the best on-screen chemistry within the franchise at that point and could have elevated both films even higher in terms of cohesion and the eyes of fans and critics. While both characters have seemingly come to rest after high-stakes adventures in their last outings, there’s still a minor chance that the two will get to play off of each other at least once more in future projects.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is now available for streaming on Disney Plus.
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Source: LRM Online