Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has made steadily smaller connection with the Marvel films, from sending in helicarriers to quick Sokovia meetings, and Doctor Strange will continue the trend. S.H.I.E.L.D. producers explain that while Coulson’s team won’t be palling around the Sanctum Sanctorum anytime soon, Season 4 will explore “some of those same ideas” as the magical Doctor Strange.

Entertainment Weekly spoke with S.H.I.E.L.D. executive producers Maurissa Tancharoen and Jed Whedon, who again pointed to the new Ghost Rider as a gateway into magical exploration, just as Doctor Strange will do for the films. We won’t see any direct crossover (in the vein of Agents literally picking up after Thor: The Dark World), but at least venture into some of the same territory:

Our ties are at times very direct and at times are more thematic. The tie this year will feel more of a reflection of the movie, less an interweaving plot. As that movie hits the world, it comes at the right time in our show, and you will see some of those same ideas being explored.

Whedon and Tancharoen also noted that certain magical questions raised in the show might end up addressed by the film, and vice-versa after the film’s release.

Doctor Strange will introduce some new ideas, but we’re starting to lay the first brick in the yellow brick road to that. We want to slowly play with the morality of building these things, whether or not we even should and the scientific questions that come along with it. [That’s] the first step that we explore before we inevitably get into other things.

Strange-ly enough, Marvel’s TV realm has already set up a bit of Doctor Strange crossover, exploring the “Darkforce” in Agent Carter Season 2, an extra-dimensional energy more typically associated with the Sorcerer Supreme.

The pair also noted that the introduction of Life Model Decoys would also continue some of the same AI exploration that Age of Ultron begat, but will Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 4 prove so effective at handling magic as the upcoming films?

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