Sam Raimi almost didn’t direct Doctor Strange 2 after Spider-Man 3 reaction

by Natalie Kiser

Sam Raimi, Spider-Man 3, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

Although Spider-Man 3 certainly has its fans, I think most can admit that it’s easily the weakest of Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy. The film received some fairly harsh reviews upon release and it took some time before Raimi would return to the superhero genre he helped to bring about. In fact, it was the negative reaction to Spider-Man 3 that almost kept Sam Raimi from agreeing to direct Doctor Strange 2.

Sam Raimi recently spoke with Collider about returning to the realm of comic book movies for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness after Spider-Man 3.

I didn’t know that I could face it again because it was so awful, having been the director of Spider-Man 3. The Internet was getting revved up and people disliked that movie and they sure let me know about it. So, it was difficult to take back on. But then, I found out that there was an opening on Doctor Strange 2. My agent called me and said, ‘They’re looking for a director at Marvel for this movie and your name came up. Would you be interested?’ And I thought, ‘I wonder if I could still do it.’

Raimi continued, “They’re really demanding, those types of pictures. And I felt, ‘Well, that’s reason enough.’ I’ve always really liked the character of Doctor Strange. He was not my favorite, but he was right up there with the favorites. I loved the first movie, I thought [director] Scott Derrickson did a wonderful job, an incredible job. So, I said, ‘Yeah.’ They left the character in a great place. I didn’t think I would be doing another superhero movie. it just happened.” I think we can all be grateful that at the end of the day, Spider-Man 3 didn’t keep Sam Raimi from directing Doctor Strange 2. I can’t wait to see what he does with the Sorceror Supreme.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness will hit theaters on March 25, 2022, but we’ll be seeing the good doctor sooner than we think as he’s also set to star alongside Tom Holland in Spider-Man: No Way Home. The Spidey sequel is set for a December 17, 2021 release.