Multiverse of Madness

Doctor Strange 2 trailer reveals a surprising change for Stephen's love interest

One minute Christine’s there, the next she’s not.

Marvel has made an unexpected decision in its most recent teaser for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. The upcoming film is shaping up to be one of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s most ambitious entries to date, and it boasts a cast that seems to get bigger with every passing week.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE TIME-TRAVEL MOVIE? Click here to help us rank all the ones on Netflix.

In addition to rumored cast members like John Krasinski and Tom Cruise, the Multiverse of Madness cast features a number of returning MCU actors, including Benedict Cumberbatch (in multiple roles), Benedict Wong, Elizabeth Olsen, and Rachel McAdams. McAdams is set to reprise her role as Dr. Christine Palmer, and she’s been featured in several of the early trailers for Multiverse of Madness.

However, not only does the latest teaser for the Doctor Strange sequel avoid showing any new footage of McAdams’ Dr. Palmer, it also erases her from a shot that previous trailers have included her in.

An Unexplained Absence — In a new TV spot for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Benedict Cumberbatch’s Stephen Strange and Xochitl Gomez’s America Chavez can be seen standing together in front of a weird, cosmic doorway. It’s a shot that’s been shown in several Multiverse of Madness trailers, but there’s something different about it in this TV spot.

Specifically, Rachel McAdams is nowhere to be seen. Previous trailers have shown her standing alongside Cumberbatch and Gomez, and Marvel has even released an official still of the characters standing together. The new TV spot’s erasure of her therefore raises some interesting questions about Christine’s role in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.

Rachel McAdams as Christine Palmer, Benedict Cumberbatch as Stephen Strange, and Xochitl Gomez as America Chavez in a previously released still from Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.Marvel Studios

Where’s Christine? There are a few different reasons why Marvel may have chosen to erase Rachel McAdams’ Christine from a Multiverse of Madness shot she was originally in. The first is that the studio doesn’t want fans to be able to glean too much about Christine’s role.

One of the leading rumors surrounding Multiverse of Madness is that the Christine we see standing with Strange and Chavez in the film’s cosmic doorway isn’t the same one fans met in 2016’s Doctor Strange, but a variant from another universe. If that’s true — and the unique outfit she’s wearing suggests that it is — it’s possible Marvel has chosen to cut her from its latest teasers in the hopes of preventing too many fans from catching onto the film’s Christine twist.

Alternatively, it’s possible that McAdams has simply been cut from this Multiverse of Madness scene in the time between the release of the film’s previous teasers and its latest one. After all, it’s been widely reported that Marvel’s been hard at work on reshooting parts of Multiverse of Madness.

So there’s a chance that the changes Marvel’s made to the film have resulted in Christine no longer being present with Strange and Chavez during the moment shown in the image above.

Rachel McAdams as Dr. Christine Palmer in 2016’s Doctor Strange.Marvel Studios

The Inverse Analysis — Until Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness finally hits theaters next month, there’s no way of definitely knowing the reason behind Christine Palmer’s erasure from the film’s latest TV spot. That said, if she was cut from the trailer because of recent changes to the plot, that would ostensibly confirm that the reshoots for Multiverse of Madness have been even more extensive than Marvel has let on. We’ll just have to wait to find out if that’s actually the case.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness hits theaters on May 6, 2022.