When Marvel successfully launches a new franchise, they usually set right to work cranking out sequels. But the first Doctor Strange — which grossed $677 million worldwide — came out in 2016 and thus far there’s been almost no movement on a follow-up. Benedict Cumberbatch did show up briefly in Thor: Ragnarok, he was a key character in Avengers: Infinity War, and presumably he’ll also factor into Avengers: Endgame provided he can get over his mild case of being completely dead. But no Doctor Strange 2? By the Hoary Hosts of Hoggoth, what gives?

Whatever the reason for the delay, The Hollywood Reporter says Doctor Strange 2 is now on track — with Doctor Strange director Scott Derrickson returning to continue the adventures of Marvel’s Sorcerer Supreme:

A search for a writer to pen the script is about to get underway. Benedict Cumberbatch will return as Stephen Strange, the good doctor turned master of the mystic arts, as will Benedict Wong, who played his right-hand man, Wong. Rachel McAdams, who played Stephen Strange’s love interest, is likely to return as well.

Derrickson did a fine job with the original movie — bringing a unique set of psychedelic visuals to Strange’s journeys through our world and the astral plane — although he also received some criticism for his casting of Tilda Swinton as the Ancient One. (You can read how he responded to that in our interview with him from 2016.)

When I revisited the movie earlier this year, I enjoyed the visuals, although I also felt its origin story was recycled from too many other MCU movies. The nice part about a sequel, presumably, is it won’t have to worry about any of that stuff, and can simply focus on sending Strange on his next trippy adventure. At the moment, there’s no announced release date for the project.

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