Which director created the modern superhero movie? You could say Jon Favreau, who helmed the original Iron Man, the one that birthed what became the Marvel Cinematic Universe. You could go all the way back to 1978’s Superman: The Movie, the first blockbuster to take superheroes seriously, and say it’s the late Richard Donner. You could also say Sam Raimi, whose 2002 movie Spider-Man revamped the genre after the fall of the Batman franchise in the late ’90s.
Jump two decades and Raimi is in an unusual situation. Not only has the comic book movie he’s now helming undergone “significant” reshoots, but even he — Sam Raimi, the director of said movie — isn’t sure if it’s done filming. That film is Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, the long-awaited solo sequel for a character who also plays a major role in the new, money-gobbling Spider-Man: No Way Home. Raimi chatted with Variety (in a bit teased out by The AV Club) about, among other things, the status of that project. And, well, maybe someone else knows.
“I wish I knew the answer to that question,” Raimi replied when asked if they’d wrapped filming. It’s not as earth-shattering as that may sound. Marvel movies have simply become, well, bigger than the people credited with directing them, some of whom aren’t even allowed to direct their own action scenes. Raimi explained:
“I think we’re done, but we just cut everything. We’re just starting to test the picture and we’ll find out if there’s anything that’s got to be picked up. If something’s unclear or another improvement I can make in this short amount of time left, I’ll do it. One thing I know about the Marvel team is they won’t stop. They’ll keep pushing it until it’s as close to being great as it could.”
Mind you, Raimi’s not complaining. He says Marvel is a “great team to work with” and that he’s been “super-supported” by everyone, including honcho Kevin Feige. There is one thing, though: It is slated to hit theaters pretty soon, on May 6 of this year. But Hollywood is a place of magic, and if Ridley Scott could film Christopher Plummer’s scenes for All the Money in the World about a month before it hit theaters nationwide, Marvel can still film some new stuff for Doctor Strange 2 with a whopping four months until release day.
Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness hits theaters on May 6.