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Joaquin Phoenix May Be in Final Talks for DOCTOR STRANGE (UPDATED)

Earlier today, Collider editor Frosty teased that his site had a big scoop to drop today, and here it is: Joaquin Phoenix is in final talks to play the title role in Marvel’s upcoming Doctor Strange movie, slated for release on July 8, 2016 with Scott Derrickson at the helm. Rumors have been swirling around the project for months, touching on everyone from Benedict Cumberbatch to, most recently, Jack Huston. In July there were reports that Phoenix was in the running, but that died down when there was no casting announcement at Comic-Con (Some people thought Cumberbatch’s attendance was evidence that he had been selected, but again, no dice).

Interestingly, Collider’s post sparked a Twitter war among the sites that trade in these secrets, with Latino Review’s El Mayimbe the most stridently in opposition, going so far as tweeting a screen grab of a text from a source, apparently at Phoenix’s agency, claiming that it was definitely not final. Here's how that all went down:

Wow. Things got heated there (Don't worry, Frosty and El Mayimbe have since made up). So it sounds like they are in talks but the deal may not go through because Phoenix won't commit to a long contract. Makes sense.

And also, I am really hoping Phoenix won't commit. Of all the names that have been bandied about, he is my least favorite, and I was really hoping they would go for a lesser known actor (Edgar Ramirez and Jack Huston were my favorite rumors). But we'll see. If the part goes to Phoenix, it's not like he's a bad actor. I am sure he will be excellent, and Doctor Strange is a key piece of Marvel's phase 3 strategy, opening up the supernatural section of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, so I am sure they will pick someone who fits the script. Who do you want to see in the role?

UPDATE 6:34 PM EDT: A new twitterer has joined the fray refuting the basis of El Mayimbe's claims. Jeff Sneider of The Wrap just sent this one out:

Curiouser and curiouser...

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