Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness follows Benedict Cumberbatch's titular hero as he navigates his way through the MCU's parallel universes while also dealing with the villainous pursuit of Elizabeth Olsen's Scarlet Witch.
Elizabeth Olsen's Scarlet Witch has undoubtedly won the hearts of the fans again, but this time as terrifying a villain. However, the sequel's writer recently unveiled that the original script didn't actually include Wanda, instead, the initial script was supposed to introduce a Doctor Strange-tied villain from its source material.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness head writer Michael Waldron sat down with Den of Geek and confirmed that the sequel almost featured Marvel Comics character, Nightmare, as the main villain of the sequel.
Waldron shared that he had to rework the script with director Sam Raimi for a more multiversal adversary, where the MCU's Phase 4 currently revolves.
Waldron revealed, “There was different stuff. I think it’s been reported that once upon a time, there was some talk of Nightmare and stuff like that. But when I came on board, it was a Multiverse story. And so it was always about trying to figure out who that multiversal adversary was going to be.”
“When I originally came on in February of 2020, Sam and I inherited the story that had been worked on by Scott and Jade Bartlett, the original writer on the project. It had a lot of really cool ideas in it, and we were initially going to just try to figure out our version of that story in time to start shooting the movie in May. Then COVID happened a month later, and the movie was pushed, which afforded us an opportunity to kind of start over and re-examine what we wanted the movie to be," Waldron added.
Although fans still can't get enough of the ruthless Scarlet Witch and continue to applaud Elizabeth Olsen’s fierce anti-hero performance, Nightmare wouldn't be a bad choice for a villain.
Nightmare is a villain originally tied to Doctor Strange in Marvel Comics. Nightmare is Marvel's one of the most dangerous demons due to his ability to capture anyone's astral form from their physical body and torture it to death. While it's evident that Multiverse of Madness is clearly a missed opportunity to introduce Nightmare, especially after the sequel featured the concept of Dreamwalking, Marvel Studios' decision to proceed with Scarlet Witch and focus on parallel universes and variants might be a wise decision for the franchise as they approach a more expansive Multiverse storyline.
While it’s too hard to guess what the version of the script where Nightmare was the villain turns out, considering the villain’s significance in the source material, Nightmare could still appear in the next installments of Doctor Strange, or even in the MCU’s next big projects.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is still showing in theaters worldwide.