While we already knew that Tilda Swinton was playing The Ancient One in Marvel’s Doctor Strange, it’s still nice to see it finally confirmed. Marvel Studios’ themselves have remained quiet on the matter, but in a recent interview with Screen Crush, the actress finally spoke up about it…
“Well, there’s no particular interest in getting into something bigger, or even smaller, I just really liked the premise of this and the idea of playing this character. I’m a Marvel fan and I think this particular world that Doctor Strange goes into is really, really, really exciting. I’m really interested as both an actor and a fan to see what’s done in this particular world. It’s all about creativity. It’s not about exploding at the end. It’s about something very different. The idea of playing the Ancient One is really just too tickling. I can’t say no to that!”
While The Ancient One has been traditionally shown in the source material as an aging Asian man, the being has taken many forms throughout the decades. Appearing as a woman as ethereal in look as Swinton is not out of character. Some have cried foul about whitewashing with this bit of casting, though the gender-swapping seems to have muted the outrage a bit. They certainly have a point, but I trust that Marvel and Swinton have something special up their sleeve here.
Doctor Strange is set for a November 4, 2016 release. The project is directed by Scott Derrickson, from a screenplay by Joshua Oppenheimer, Thomas Dean Donnelly, and Jon Spaihts. The film stars Benedict Cumberbatch as ‘Doctor Stephen Strange’, Chiwetel Ejiofor as ‘Baron Karl Mordo’, and Tilda Swinton as ‘The Ancient One’.