Spoilers for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness ahead. The film’s screenwriter Michael Waldron opens up on the role Charlize Theron’s Clea plays in Doctor Strange’s life in the future.
Spoilers for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness ahead!
Marvel’s latest film Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness has had a strong start at the box office. The Benedict Cumberbatch and Elizabeth Olsen-starrer has been loved by fans and critics alike. One thing in particular that has caught the fans’ fancy is the starry cameos in the film. One of the most startling cameos is at the very end of the film, in the mid-credits scene. That takes place when Charlize Theron arrives as a mysterious character to take a surprised Strange to the dark dimension. Also read: Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness: Charlize Theron introduces her character Clea, fans welcome her to the MCU
While the character did not introduce herself, eagle-eyed fans were quick to deduce that she was Clea, a sorcerer associated with Doctor Strange in the comics. Charlize herself confirmed that a few days later when she shared pictures of the character with a caption, “Meet Clea”.
In conversation with Vanity Fair, the film’s screenwriter Michael Waldron revealed that Charlize had been cast in the film even before they had settled on the ending. “I think we cast Charlize before we even knew exactly what we were going to do. Then we settled on our ending of the third eye opening, the bill coming due for Strange, and you get your Sleepaway Camp-esque ending—the oh-my-God ending,” he said.
In the comics, Clea has been Strange’s protégé and later love interest. Many fans felt that her entry into the MCU paves way for a romance between the two characters. This makes more sense given that Strange’s MCU love interest Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams) is now married to someone else (at least in one universe).
Talking about Clea’s future in Strange’s life and the MCU as whole, Michael said, “I was thrilled to introduce her as Clea. Clea has been Strange’s counterpart in the comics for a long time. She’s an amazing sorcerer. She’s also his great love; she’s his wife at one point. We had to conclude his story with Christine Palmer—Rachel McAdams’s character—first, and at the end of that Strange walks away with this wisdom. He’s been able to face his fears and not be afraid to love somebody or let somebody love him. I think that’s the perfect place for him to be mentally to finally meet Clea, who’s gonna be a really important figure in his life moving forward.”
Directed by Sam Raimi, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is part of phase 4 of the MCU. The film released in theatres on May 6 and has so far earned over half a billion dollars at the global box office. This includes a rich haul of over ₹103 crore in India alone.