{RUMOR} Will Tom Hardy or Benedict Cumberbatch Embody “Doctor Strange?”

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and are reportedly on the short list to star in Marvel’s upcoming . The project centers on Dr. Stephen Strange, a young, arrogant surgeon with a promising , who loses his ability to operate after a terrible accident. Despondent and suicidal, Dr. Strange seeks advice from a mystical being known as the Ancient One and learns that he is the newly designated Sorceror Supreme, responsible for protecting the planet from evil. With his girlfriend Clea and his loyal assistant Wong in tow, Strange sets out to fulfill his destiny. The project finally secured a director in Scott Derrickson, who will be working off of a script penned by Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer of “Conan the Barbarian” fame.

Hardy’s started strong with “Black Hawk Down” and hasn’t slowed since. He’s starred in some pretty impressive projects including “Inception,” “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” and “The Dark Knight Rises.” Hardy has a slew of new projects in the works, including action flick “Mad Max: Fury Road,” Doug Liman’s “Splinter Cell” and an untitled poaching project set up at Appian Way. With all that in the works, it’s possible his busy schedule will keep him out of the Doctor’s cape.

Cumberbatch is less well known for big budget action films, but one of his more recent roles as Kahn in “Star Trek Into Darkness” could indicate a turn toward blockbuster fare. Cumberbatch’s past roles are more on the dramatic side, including “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” “War Horse,” and “The Fifth Estate.” He also stars in the BBC series “Sherlock” with Martin Freeman. His upcoming projects include playing mathematician Alan Turing in biopic “The Imitation Game,” a reprisal of his role as Smaug in “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” and the Beatles biopic “The Man Who,” where he’ll portray Beatles manager Brian Epstein.

Hardy is repped by and . Cumberbatch is with and .

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