The mystical world of Doctor Strange is about to add some rough-and-tumble physicality. According to TheWrap, martial artist Scott Adkins will fill an undisclosed role in Marvel’s 2016 film, which follows neurosurgeon Stephen Strange as he is plunged into a world of magic and sorcerers after an accident injures his hands.
Adkins will join an eclectic cast that includes Benedict Cumberbatch as Strange, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Tilda Swinton, Rachel McAdams, and the recently announced Michael Stuhlbarg. Adkins’ involvement suggests director Scott Derrickson’s handling of the action sequences will be a blend of special effects wizardry and real-world combat, matching spells to fists.
Adkins’ star has steadily risen over the last decade thanks to his work in some well-liked direct-to-video action movies, including the Undisputed series, Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning, and Ninja: Shadow of a Tear. He’s also occasionally popped up in wide-release films such as The Bourne Ultimatum, Zero Dark Thirty, and in a sizable henchman part in The Expendables 2, where he traded blows with Hollywood action favorite Jason Statham. While the martial artist has certainly kept himself busy with multiple films each year, Doctor Strange will prove to be his most high profile release yet.
Marvel is certainly no stranger to hiring martial artists, with former UFC champion Georges St-Pierre trading blows with Chris Evans in the opening of Captain America: The Winter Soldier and ex-WWE champion Dave Bautista finding his star-making role as Drax the Destroyer in Guardians of the Galaxy. Like those films, Doctor Strange is being produced by Kevin Feige. It will be released on November 4, 2016.