Mads Mikkelsen Joining ‘Doctor Strange’ Would Be The Perfect Casting Decision For A Lot Of Reasons

Hannibal Lecter might soon be joining Sherlock Holmes on the big screen — Variety recently learned that Mads Mikkelsen is in preliminary talks to join Benedict Cumberbatch on the Doctor Strange cast. Cumberbatch is already slated to play the titular role, and Mikkelsen might come on board as one of the main villains in the film. The film follows former neurosurgeon Stephen Vincent Strange, who becomes Earth's sorcerer-protector. Tilda Swinton will play his mentor "The Ancient One," while Chiwetel Ejiofor will appear as another of The Ancient One's mentees, who eventually becomes Doctor Strange's arch-nemesis.

The film is the latest in the flurry of Marvel Comics films to come onto the scene, including the Iron Man franchise to the more recent Guardians of the Galaxy. And it's not the first time Marvel has courted the Danish actor — Mikkelsen was also in talks to join Thor: The Dark World, again as a villain, before the role went to Christopher Eccleston, Variety has reported. Because of his strong frame, muted facial expressions, and perhaps also his adeptness for the type of role, Mikkelsen is often cast as a villain: Cinema Blend noted with surprise when he was cast, not as the bad guy, but as "not a bad guy" in Star Wars: Rogue One (though this doesn't necessarily mean he's an outright good guy).

Though no offer has been made yet for Mikkelsen's role in Doctor Strange, Variety reports sources expect it to be forthcoming. Marvel would make a strong choice in choosing Mikkelsen — here are a few roles that demonstrate why he's the man for the job.

1. Casino Royale

Mikkelsen plays Le Chiffre, the antagonist in the first Daniel Craig-as-Bond film, Casino Royale. There's something about a single tear of blood that will chill your own marrow.

2. The Hunt

Mikkelsen's supposed antagonism in The Hunt is actually premised on a lie. A divorced father of a teenager, he's also a kindergarten teacher who becomes the target of the community when he's accused of sexually abusing one of his students. It's a tragic story that, with Mikkelsen in the lead role, allows viewers to understand how you can sympathize with both the victims and perpetrators of a vicious rumor.

3. Hannibal

Though Bryan Fuller's adaptation of this Silence of the Lambs prequel will conclude at the end of the third season, Mikkelsen is still one of the most talked-about actors on television right now. He's a worthy successor of the blood-curdling villainy of Anthony Hopkins.

4. The Salvation

When Jon's family is killed by a bloodthirsty gang, he sets out on a revenge quest that catalyzes a whole lot of violence. Though Mikkelsen's character, a settler in this Danish western, begins the story as a relative pacifist, it shows how the unlikeliest candidates can quickly turn into antiheroes.

5. The Three Musketeers

As with Hannibal and Casino Royale's Le Chiffre, Mikkelsen's Three Musketeers character Rochefort is a prototypical villain (he even sports an eye patch!). It's yet another adaptation from literature in which Mikkelsen plays the baddie, but it just serves to show what a great villain he'd make in Doctor Strange.

6. With Blood On My Hands

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Mikkelsen returns in the second installment of Nicolas Winding Refn's Pusher series, playing Tonny, the incarcerated son of a violent gangster. He's released from prison and sets about picking up his life — but finds his troubled relationship with his father overshadows many of his actions. Plus, he's pretty violent himself.

It's by no means a sure thing — Marvel has yet to give Mikkelsen a formal offer, according to Variety. But based on Mikkelsen's past work as sympathetic, somewhat ambiguous bad guys, he'd make an excellent choice to pick up where Hannibal will leave him with Doctor Strange.

Images: Metro-Goldwyn Mayer; Nordisk Film (2); NBC; Summit Entertainment