Benedict Cumberbatch to play Marvel superhero

Benedict Cumberbatch

Benedict Cumberbatch is to play the neurosurgeon-turned-superhero in Marvel's Doctor Strange.

Marvel's announcement means the Sherlock star, long tipped for the part, will be adding another egotistical intellect to his already brainy filmography. He has won acclaim for the recently-released wartime thriller The Imitation Game, in which he stars as mathematician and computer scientist Alan Turing.

Doctor Strange has previously been absent from the big screen despite decades of adaptation attempts. Stephen Strange, a character who first appeared in comics in the early 1960s, is a skilled neurosurgeon who takes up magic and sorcery after a car accident crushes his hands.

The film is to be released in November 2016. Scott Derrickson will direct from a screenplay by Jon Spaihts.