Benedict Cumberbatch brought the multiverse to the 30 Rock stage Saturday night.
Taking on hosting duties for this week’s episode of Saturday Night Live, with help from musical guest Arcade Fire, the Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness star used his opening monologue to discuss how the sketch writers were pitching him ideas tied to his latest movie. Cumberbatch argued he’s been in other movies like The Power of Dog. Lorne Michaels said, “Nobody saw it.”
“I said, ‘C’mon, man, I was nominated for an Oscar for that. I didn’t win. I was beat by Will Smith,” he joked, referencing Smith’s infamous slap to Chris Rock. “Not physically. Not physically.”
Cumberbatch was very honored to be hosting this Mother’s Day edition of SNL, taking the time to thank his mother and wife. He also made a reference to his character Dr. Strange by opening a portal during his monologue, which Marvel fans will be pleased.
Of course, Cumberbatch is expected to be having a lot of fun with the Marvel references tonight, as his film is expected to do some impressive numbers for the company. Multiverse of Madness is now projected, per Variety, to make over $175 million at the domestic box office this weekend, and between $285 million and $340 million globally. This would give the film the second-biggest opening weekend in the COVID-19 era, sitting only behind Spider-Man: No Way Home, which brought in a hard-to-top $260 million in its first weekend.
Speaking of the film—which also stars Benedict Wong, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Elizabeth Olsen—Cumberbatch told Complex’s Kayla Rodriguez how much he’s changed as an actor since the 2016 original.
“It didn’t feel unfamiliar,” he said. “But what’s nice in this is we get to stretch him and evolve him in a way that only standalone films can actually do. And there’s certainly a lot of that for the audience to pick up on and enjoy. And I can’t wait to see what folks think of where we take it to this film, and what the potential is going forward.”
Check out his opening monologue below.