Source: Marvel Studios

Marvel’s Doctor Strange is now less than eight weeks away from its release date. It will be here before we know it and, if director Scott Derrickson has anything to say about it, the film will open up a whole new side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He recently spoke to Los Angeles Daily News about what the film is like and the source material that inspired him.

“It’s pretty psychedelic. If your love for the early Stan Lee-Steve Ditko comics was that visual, psychedelic ambition, I think you’ll be pretty satisfied. The primary resource for the visual design of the whole movie came from those comics.”

That is music to my ears, as the Stan Lee-Steve Ditko run on Strange Tales features most of my favorite Doctor Strange stories and art. The trailers have definitely shown some of those psychedelic visuals, but I also hope that what we have seen so far only scratches the surface of how crazy things will be in the final film.

The kaleidoscopic cityscapes, portals, spells, and ethereal bodies all make for a great start, but I’m also looking for things to get a little other-worldly. Doctor Strange is a character who travels through different dimensions, which we got a peek of during the exclusive Hall H footage at San Diego Comic-Con in July.

For a better idea of the visuals that I hope Derrickson is talking about, see some of Ditko’s stunning art in the image below.

Source: Marvel Comics
Source: Marvel Comics

That page is from Strange Tales #138 and Scott Derrickson recently called the top panel his favorite “comic book panel ever.” Marvel Studios ventured into this territory a little bit last year with the Quantum Realm sequence in Ant-Man, but Doctor Strange should go much further, as Derrickson’s love of Ditko’s art helped get him the director job after eight meetings with Marvel.

“I told them it should take a bold left turn, like the ’60s comics. And I think they liked how I gravitate toward real actors, talented actors who are grounded in performances that are real, while dealing with the supernatural. That’s why I’ve had great actors in genre films, which they usually don’t do. And that was certainly the case with Doctor Strange.”

As mind-blowing as the visual effects in Doctor Strange are sure to be, it would all be for naught without the right actor to breathe life into the Sorcerer Supreme. It took time and even a brief detour before some rescheduling allowed the director to land his top choice in Benedict Cumberbatch.

“He is perfect casting. Myself and Kevin Feige and the other producers involved came to a consensus very quickly that Benedict was the right guy for the role. There’s just an overlap between his work and the comics that you can see and feel. You feel that he can play the intelligence, the arrogance, the unlikability and yet intrigue of Stephen Strange, and that the massive arc that the character goes through in those early comics is something that he would be able to portray.”

From Robert Downey, Jr.’s Iron Man to Chris Pratt’s Star-Lord, Marvel Studios and casting director Sarah Finn have consistently found the right actors to portray Marvel heroes. Cumberbatch is sure to continue that impressive winning streak for all the reasons identified by Derrickson. Combine Cumberbatch and his supremely talented castmates with wild, psychedelic visuals movie audiences have never seen before and Marvel Studios may be less than two months away from its next hit franchise.

Marvel’s Doctor Strange is in theaters November 4.