Marvel Studios has found a familiar face to direct the Doctor Strange sequel.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Scott Derrickson -- who helmed the first film -- has finalized a deal to return to the franchise. Meanwhile, Marvel is seeking a writer for the script. The report claims the project could start production as soon as spring 2020, with a targeted release date of May 2021.
During an appearance at Fan Expo Vancouver, Doctor Strange star Benedict Wong revealed he hopes to begin filming Doctor Strange 2 at the end of the year. Between Derrickson's new deal, Wong's statement and another report that production kicks off soon, it seems very likely the as-yet untitled Doctor Strange sequel will be Marvel's next project to film after The Eternals.
Directed by Derrickson, Doctor Strange earned $677.7 million worldwide and was praised for its stunning visuals. The film introduced Cumberbatch as the Sorcerer Supreme, with Benedict Wong, Mads Mikkelsen, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Tilda Swinton in supporting roles. Although Strange was absent from Captain America: Civil War, he unofficially joined the Avengers in this year's Avengers: Infinity War, in which he traveled to Titan with Iron-Man and Spider-Man.
Doctor Strange and Wong are expected to return in Avengers 4 ahead of Doctor Strange 2. Directed by Joe and Anthony Russo, the film stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Brie Larson, Mark Ruffalo, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, Paul Bettany, Anthony Mackie, Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Olsen, Tom Holland, Benedict Cumberbatch, Chadwick Boseman, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Karen Gillan, Evangeline Lilly, and Josh Brolin. Avengers 4 is set to hit theaters on May 3, 2019.