Benedict Cumberbatch’s ‘Doctor Strange 2’ Had An Insane Budget, Disney Tax Filings Reveal

Multimillion-Dollar Madness: Inside the eye-opening budget of the costliest MCU movie to date

Doctor Strange 2 Multiverse of Madness Benedict Cumberbatch

In a revealing financial disclosure according to Forbes, Disney has confirmed that the production costs for the 2022 blockbuster, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, soared to an astonishing $414.9 million, surpassing even the hefty budget of Avengers: Age of Ultron. This places Multiverse of Madness among the priciest movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).

The sequel, starring Benedict Cumberbatch as the sorcerer supreme, centers on a quest to stop Elizabeth Olsen’s Scarlet Witch from capturing America Chavez, who has the ability to travel into different dimensions.

Released in May 2022 amid the pandemic, the film’s box office did not reach the billion-dollar mark, a feat achieved by several of its predecessors. It even fell short of the profits from Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame, which collectively generated $1.2 billion in worldwide box office.

However, Multiverse of Madness emerged as Disney’s highest-grossing Marvel film post-pandemic, grossing $955.8 million worldwide and netting a profit of $127.3 million from box office receipts alone.

Disney CEO Bob Iger announced more changes to Marvel’s release strategy, focusing on enhancing quality over quantity.

During Disney’s recent quarterly earnings call, CEO Bob Iger revealed some of his plans for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, emphasizing a reduction in output. According to Iger, Disney plans to decrease the number of Marvel TV series to two per year, down from as many as four, and to limit film releases to a maximum of three annually, a reduction from the previous four.

Disney’s new Marvel strategy, explained

“We’re slowly going to decrease volume and go to probably about two TV series a year instead of what had become four and reduce our film output from maybe four a year to two, or a maximum of three,” the Disney CEO said during the company’s quarterly earnings call Tuesday. “And we’re working hard on what that path is.”

Iger elaborated on the future direction for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, noting the development of a couple of promising films slated for 2025, followed by more entries in the Avengers series. “Overall, I feel great about the slate. It’s something that I’ve committed to spending more and more time on,” Iger stated, reflecting his confidence in Marvel’s Kevin Feige and his team.

Rick Lemoine

Rick Lemoine

Raised on a hearty dose of Marvel and DC comics, Rick combines his love for superheroes with a knack for writing about Hollywood's brightest.