Scott Derrickson has detailed why he decided to step down as director on the sequel to Doctor Strange, saying that he left to avoid making a “monstrosity”.

The director, who helmed the original 2016 film, was originally announced to direct the sequel, titled Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness. Derrickson, however, departed the project in January 2020 citing “creative differences”, and was later replaced by Sam Raimi.

Speaking on The Playlist’s The Discourse podcast, Derrickson went into further detail on the differences between his vision and that of Marvel Studios.


“All I can say is that what we said publicly is exactly the truth,” Derrickson said. “We had real creative differences. You know, the movie I wanted to make and how I wanted to make it was different than – it was just increasingly obvious that we were pulling against each other.

Elizabeth Olsen plays Scarlet Witch in ‘Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness’. CREDIT: Marvel Studios/Disney

“And that’s how you make a really bad movie, I think. When the producer or the studio and the filmmaker are making different movies, you end up with a monstrosity and, you know, that’s why I had to bounce.”

The director described his version of the sequel as an “extreme departure” from the original, adding that it would have been “a genuine horror film of sorts”.

Derrickson, who attended the premiere for Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness in 2022 and was credited as an executive producer, said he’s “still friends” with Marvel’s Kevin Feige and Raimi. “I love Sam, so there’s no bad blood over that.”

Following his departure from the sequel, Derrickson went onto direct 2021 supernatural horror The Black Phone. His previous films include The Exorcism Of Emily Rose and Sinister.


The director has contributed a segment to horror anthology film V/H/S/85, which is the sixth instalment in the franchise. The film, released today (October 6) on Shudder, also features sections directed by David Bruckner, Gigi Saul Guerrero and Natasha Kermani.

 Scott Derrickson has detailed why he decided to step down as director on the sequel to Marvel’s ‘Doctor Strange’.  Read More