Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness has been a source of rampant fan speculation. That’s not all that surprising, given that what little we know about the film has framed it as the biggest film in Marvel’s entire Phase Four lineup.
Of all the Multiverse of Madness rumors and leaks that hit the internet these past few months, none have been as surprising (or exciting) as the reports suggesting it will feature an appearance from the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s first mutant character. Several unconfirmed leaks from the film report the film will travel to an alternate reality, where Charles Xavier, aka Professor X, resides.
Now, a new leak suggests there may be more validity to those Professor X rumors than fans previously thought.
If true, that could mean that Professor X — one of the key members of the Illuminati in the comics — will make his MCU debut in Multiverse of Madness. It also, notably, suggests the ongoing rumors that Namor the Sub-Mariner — another key Illuminati member — is the villain in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever could turn out to be true.
Before we dive too far into the implications and possibilities of this, we should note: this alleged Marvel leak should not be taken as an official confirmation.
A Powerful New Team — In the comics, the Illuminati are a secret group of powerful superheroes, who share information and secrets with each other in order to preserve peace on Earth. Along the way, they protect it from its various cosmic threats.
The group originally consisted of Reed Richards/Mister Fantastic, Tony Stark/Iron Man, Charles Xavier/Professor X, Doctor Strange, Black Bolt, and Namor the Sub-Mariner. Over the years, the group has also counted within its ranks characters like Captain America, Black Panther, Yellowjacket, and Captain Britain.
All in all, the Illuminati is an immensely powerful group of superheroes — one designed to act as Earth’s silent guardians. With that in mind, what makes the idea of Marvel developing an Illuminati film or TV show so exciting is that it would see the studio bring together some of its most powerful and intelligent characters under one roof. Given the group’s capabilities, the formation of the Illuminati in the MCU would redefine the power hierarchy of the multiverse.
This rumor also ties into a number of theories that have been circulating online in recent months regarding both Multiverse of Madness and the MCU beyond it.
As previously mentioned, both Namor and Professor X are rumored to appear in the Doctor Strange and Black Panther sequels; that means the MCU could soon introduce two key Illuminati members. Additionally, Multiverse of the Madness is rumored to see Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) enter an alternate reality where the Illuminati already exists.
The Inverse Analysis — With characters like Professor X and Namor rumored to make MCU debuts in the near future, there is a chance that Marvel could roll out an Illuminati film or TV series in the next few years. After all, Doctor Strange is already active in the MCU, and we know that Mister Fantastic and the rest of the Fantastic Four are on their way in as well.
Considering this, it’s clear the MCU is close to having a full Illuminati lineup. That’s exciting, given that several other powerful comics teams like the Midnight Sons, the Young Avengers, and the X-Men are also rumored to enter the MCU soon.
Indeed, it’s looking likely that, within just a few short years, the Avengers won’t be the only superpowered group protecting the multiverse.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is set to hit theaters on March 25, 2022.