Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness was highly-anticipated for its number of rumored cameos of several MCU characters from different massive franchises. While the Doctor Strange sequel undoubtedly didn't disappoint in terms of character appearances, the film also heavily featured Multiverse variants of both Elizabeth Olsen's Wanda and Benedict Cumberbatch's Doctor Strange. But what most fans are intrigued about is when Zombie Strange eerily appeared in the film, going against the unconquerable Scarlet Witch.
However, according to Doctor Strange 2 head writer, Zombie Strange almost didn't make it to the sequel, because Sam Raimi, a critically-acclaimed director known for his distinct take on horror films took his time to decide about Undead Strange's inclusion.
In an interview with Polygon, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness head writer Michael Waldron revealed that director Sam Raimi was really hesitant with Dead Strange's inclusion in the sequel.
Waldron explained, "I was totally writing with Sam in mind the entire time. I had watched all his movies. I tried to really get an ear for the dialogue in his movies, because I wanted it to feel like a Sam Raimi film. But Sam, to his credit, had no interest in coming in and just playing the hits. Sam did not come in and say, I need you to give me a zombie. And in fact, when I presented the idea of Dead Strange to him, there was a real hesitancy on his part, because he didn’t want it to seem like he was just saying, 'I want to do my Sam Raimi thing.'"
But when everything is laid out and Waldron and Raimi saw eye-to-eye on the vision, the two immediately decided to include a Doctor Strange Zombie variant.
"So when we could justify it in that way, then Sam was on board," Waldron added. "It was like, 'All right, now let’s have some fun, let’s really go all in.'"
It's definitely hard to process how Raimi almost didn't approve of Zombie Strange in the sequel after the director's long career in popular horror flicks like Drag Me to Hell and Evil Dead. Thankfully, seeing a Zombie Strange going face-to-face against the ruthless Scarlet Witch adds up to the thrill, and extremely showcases Doctor Strange's determination and range of power as the MCU’s beloved sorcerer.
Nevertheless, thanks to Sam Raimi, fans experienced the first-ever MCU film that includes jump scares and horror elements that are not typically present in a superhero film. If Marvel Studios decides to bring Raimi for more MCU projects, his distinct approach will certainly still be enjoyed.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is still showing in theaters worldwide.