Hold on to your grimoire! For months, fans (myself included) have been speculating not only about the characters the stellar cast of Marvel' "Doctor Strange" would be playing, but also what lead Benedict Cumberbatch would look like as the mystical superhero himself.
Now we no longer have to guess if Cumberbatch would grow a goatee or don the cape and high-collared costume just as the character Doctor Strange wears in the famed Marvel comics created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko in the Silver Age of comics.
Entertainment Weekly posted on Monday, December 28, a first look at Cumberbatch looking like a dead ringer for the comic book character Doctor Strange with all the elements of the paranormal hero complete with a magical spell at his finger tips.
Cumberbatch plays Dr. Stephen Strange who, after a tragic car accident, discovers the hidden world of alternate dimensions and magic.
Principal photography already started filming in November with the cast which includes Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor ("Serenity"), Rachel McAdams ("Sherlock Holmes"), Michael Stuhlbarg ("Steve Jobs"), Mads Mikkelsen ("Hannibal") and Tilda Swinton ("The Grand Budapest Hotel").
Executive producer Stephen Broussard and producer Kevin Feige have also finally confirmed that Mikkelsen will be playing the main villain in "Doctor Strange."
"Mads' character is a sorcerer who breaks off into his own sect," Feige told Entertainment Weekly. "[He] believes that the Ancient One (played by Swinton) is just protecting her own power base and that the world may be better off if we were to allow some of these other things through."
Director Scott Derrickson doesn't wrap the movie until March 2016, but that doesn't mean we won't be hunting for clue in that first image of Cumberbatch as Strange with the same kind of appreciation for detail his other popular character, Sherlock Holmes, would appreciate.
"I'm still in the infancy of learning all that," Cumberbatch told Entertainment Weekly. "It was like, okay, I've got to keep throwing these poses, these spells, these rune-casting things, everything he does physically."
"I'm thinking, there's going to be a huge amount of speculation and intrigue over the positioning of that finger as opposed to it being there, or there," Cumberbatch added. "And I'm still working on that. We haven't played any of those scenes yet. I felt really self-conscious. But, then, by the end, it was great. It's like anything, you just have to experiment."
In addition to its cover image, Entertainment Weekly also posted a small gallery of "Doctor Strange" images, including a side view of Cumberbatch in costume, showing off his magic skills and movie concept art of the actor after the character's tragic car accident.
The film will land in theaters in the US on November 4, 2016, in the UK October 28, 2016. No release date has been announced for Australia.