After months of anticipation, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness has finally premiered in theaters. Helmed by Sam Raimi, Marvel fans were on the edge of their seats as they witnessed the mind-blowing cameos of different MCU characters from massive franchises including Patrick Stewart’s Professor X, which seemingly teases the long-awaited return of the fan-favorite group of mutants, the X-Men.
Sadly, aside from Patrick Stewart's Professor X, not even a single member of the X-Men made it to the film, and fans are extremely disappointed.
Now, why are the X-Men mutants missing in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness?
In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness writer Michael Waldron talked about why Marvel Studios settled not to include the X-Men in the latest MCU film.
Waldron admitted that there were talks about the House of M in the comics, however, the X-Men's inclusion in the sequel would simply disrupt Wanda and Strange's arc in the film.
"Yeah, we talked about House of M, and there’s plenty of examples of Wanda doing bad things throughout the comics in an effort to get her kids back," Waldron said. "But ultimately this story didn’t need mutants to be powerful, I guess was our feeling. And, you know, wherever that lies on the timeline for the MCU, it didn’t feel like this was the right place to introduce it -- because then it suddenly would have just been about mutants. And this is really a story about Wanda and her grief and her descent into darkness in this movie."
Waldron also revealed Marvel Studios' President Kevin Feige's significance in making big decisions on the sequel. Waldron clarified that the Doctor Strange sequel "is the end of this chapter in (Wanda's) story," but could still be developed for more storylines in the future MCU projects.
"It’s all a collaboration with Kevin and certainly when it came to a character as pivotal to the MCU as Wanda, we talked about that. We tried to be clear that this is the end of this chapter of her story. Is there an opening for more story to be told down the line? I don’t know. It’s a comic book series, so you never know, right?"
Rumors that the X-Men would be included in the Doctor Strange sequel followed when the trailer and promotional materials revealed Professor X's inclusion in the film. Given this, it also looks plausible that the X-Men would surface again in the MCU now that Disney finally bought the rights of the franchise from 20th Century Fox.
Aside from that, merging the group of mutants in the film would totally misdirect the arc from Doctor Strange and Wanda. Although the film didn't feature the X-Men, their decision to include the Illuminati in the film totally makes sense.
Lastly, with how Multiverse of Madness turns out, it appears that the sequel centered on Wanda Maximoff's arc as she descends to her comic book counterpart, the Scarlet Witch. For now, it's safe to assume that Marvel Studios would give a monumental debut to the X-Men in the MCU in future projects, especially now that their leader Professor X has triumphantly returned to the franchise.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is now showing in theaters worldwide.