Benedict Cumberbatch is a busy man. The actor is fresh off starring in 2021’s highest-grossing film, he landed an Oscar nomination for The Power of the Dog and is now back as the lead in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, hitting theaters on Friday, May 6. Cumberbatch stars in the Marvel film as Doctor Stephen Strange, whose story fans watched in 2016’s Doctor Strange. Fans have gotten to see the character in various Marvel projects since then, but the standalone film allows them a closer, more personal look at Strange. 

In the sequel, Strange shows remorse for all that he has lost, including his girl Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams). He might be a beloved superhero but he still questions whether or not that makes him happy.  In this film, fans will get to meet different versions of Strange that exist in the multiverse. The one from the multiverse we know meets America Chavez (Xochitl Gomez) and he builds a strong bond with her as they unite forces to save the multiverse. Their developing relationship allows the actor and the character to show more compassion. He’s more protective and caring with the people on his team in this film, and it allows for more of an exploration of his humanity and emotional depth. 

Complex caught up with Cumberbatch ahead of the Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness release for a brief chat, and he shared what the challenges were playing the role this time around, the movie being banned in some countries, working with Xochitl Gomez, and the impact her character will have on the franchise and on fans for years to come.