Scott Derrickson, who directed the original Doctor Strange film in 2016, announced his amicable resignation from Doctor Strange 2 in a joint report with Marvel Studios in January of 2020. By April, Sam Raimi had stated that he will be directing the sequel. Here’s what Derrickson has to say about his decision now:
Why Scott Derrickson resigned from Doctor Strange 2:
C. Robert Cargill, co-writer of Doctor Strange 2, spoke with CinemaBlend about the reason behind Derrickon’s decision to stand down as director. Derrickson and Marvel had quite differing views for the film, according to Cargill, and Derrickson ultimately didn’t want to sacrifice his vision in order to direct the big-screen version of Joe Hill’s The Black Phone. “It was creative differences,” Cargill confirmed before elaborating further on why they didn’t creatively align. “[Scott Derrickson] wanted to do one movie, and Marvel wanted to do another movie. So he sat there and said, ‘Well s***, I’ve got this great script that I wrote with Cargill, and I’m really proud of.’ We were actually going to go out to other directors for The Black Phone”.
While Cargill was ready to wait for Derrickson to accompany him on The Black Phone production, Derrickson opted to leave Doctor Strange 2 since he and Marvel couldn’t agree on the film’s direction. “Scott’s like, ‘Well, I can make this movie that I’m compromising on, or I could make The Black Phone,'” Cargill explained. “It was, as he said publically, it was a hard choice to leave Strange behind, but it made it easier that he had a movie that he was looking forward to. And then the experience was just so great that we’re just are so proud and happy with what we made,” Cargill added.
How Derrickson feels about quitting Doctor Strange 2:
Derrickson talked with Empire Magazine earlier to promote his film, The Black Phone, as well as the speculations concerning his resignation. “Contrary to gossip, it was all really amicable [when I left] and I’d work there again,” Derrickson said. “I’m going to the premiere [of Multiverse of Madness] and I’m really looking forward to it, but I feel like I made the right decision. I’ve made the movie I was meant to make, at the time I was meant to make it”. Looking back, Derrickson described his decision to leave the Marvel Cinematic Universe as “the hardest decision of my career,” before asking rhetorically, “Who walks off a Marvel movie?”
“I’d been in therapy for a number of years dealing with early childhood trauma,” Derrickson revealed to Empire. “I grew up in a violent neighborhood and in a violent household,” the writer-director added, explaining how taking care of his mental health was the real reason he quit Doctor Strange.