Marvel summons Scott Derrickson to direct 'Dr. Strange' movie

Marvel has summoned horror specialist Scott Derrickson to direct 'Dr. Strange'

Scott Derrickson is about to get Strange. The genre writer-director is poised to helm Marvel's upcoming "Dr. Strange" movie, according to Variety and Derrickson himself.

"My next movie will be STRANGE," Derrickson tweeted Tuesday, along with a selfie of him holding up a "Dr. Strange" comic book. The tweet confirmed a Variety report that broke the news and said an official deal is forthcoming.

Derrickson is best known for his work in the horror genre, where he has proved adept at making the most of modest budgets: He directed and co-wrote "The Exorcism of Emily Rose" (2005), which grossed $75 million domestically on a $19-million budget, and also wrote and directed "Sinister" (2012), which grossed $48 million on a $3-million budget.

His 2008 remake of the sci-fi movie "The Day the Earth Stood Still," however, underperformed at the box office and received poor reviews. Derrickson's next movie will be "Deliver Us From Evil," which opens July 2 from Screen Gems.

Derrickson's genre chops could mesh well with the story of Dr. Strange: In the comic books, the character is a former neurosurgeon who serves as the Sorcerer Supreme, defending the world from magical and mystical threats.

Strange's character has been mentioned but not shown in previous Marvel movies such as "Thor" and "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," but a front runner for the role has yet to emerge.

A "Dr. Strange" movie would expand the Marvel cinematic universe into the realm of the supernatural, similar to the way the upcoming "Guardians of the Galaxy" is opening it up to intergalactic adventure.

As Iron Man and other properties grow longer in the tooth, Marvel needs to build franchises around newer, often less prominent characters. Already upcoming films such as  “Guardians” and TV properties such as “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D” have sought to popularize less widely known parts of the Marvel canon, as has an embattled "Ant-Man" film.

Indeed, the studio is searching for director for that insectoid effort since Edgar Wright recently departed the project.

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