Dr. Strange Is Inspired by Anthony Bourdain, and Indiana Jones


Illustration for article titled Dr. Strange, Anthony Bourdain, and Indiana Jones Have Something in Common

Image: Marvel Entertainment

What do Doctor Strange, Anthony Bourdain, and Indiana Jones have in common? Well, writer Michael Waldron, of course.

Waldron, writer on Loki and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, drew inspiration from the fictional Indiana Jones and real-life traveling chef Anthony Bourdain. And how does this inspiration translate into Marvel speak? He explains his reasoning in a recent interview with Vanity Fair. “I gravitated toward [travel documentarian and chef] Anthony Bourdain,” Waldron states. “Strange is an elitist as a neurosurgeon and a sorcerer. Anthony Bourdain was a man of the people, but there was that intense intellect. You always felt like he could eviscerate anybody with his words at any time. But yet, Anthony Bourdain never really punched down. That was the first ingredient in the stew for Doctor Strange.”

Bourdain was a globe-trotting chef who documented his travels on hit television shows No Reservations, and Parts Unknown. He stayed away from the mainstream. Eating local foods and engaging with local people was his brand. In 2018, he passed away at the age of 62.

Waldron then talks about how Indiana Jones influenced the characterization of Dr. Strange. “He’s Indiana Jones in a cloak to me,” Waldron says. “He’s a hero who can take a punch. That’s what made those Harrison Ford heroes so great. Those guys get their asses kicked. Look at Stephen Strange in the first movie. He’s really getting beat up but he’s very capable and everything. I can tell you that it’s a ride…very Sam Raimi. The film is incredibly visually thrilling. John Mathieson, our D.P., who shot Gladiator and Logan—I think the look of it is going to be unlike anything you’ve seen in the MCU before.”

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is supposed to shape the future of the MCU. Waldron is shaping the aspect of TIME for the MCU, and it seems like his work pulls inspiration from fascinating places.


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