For longtime fans of Doctor Strange, the decision to exclude Clea from the upcoming film is a bit heartbreaking. Not only is she the long-running love interest of the Sorcerer Supreme, but she has always been his direct link to the Dark Dimension.
If you're not as familiar with Doctor Strange, here's a free Clea lesson.
Clea is the Princess of The Dark Dimension, the infamous home of all things dark and magical. Even though she rules the magical underworld, she is far from a villain - Her rule over The Dark Dimension means keeping that darkness from spilling over into our world. When Doctor Strange was engaged in a battle in The Dark Dimension, Clea came to his aid, and the two fell in love. They worked together, using their powers to keep their worlds separate.
Clea is basically the Pepper Potts to Doctor Strange's Iron Man - he needs her in his life.
Knowing all of that, it's difficult to think that Marvel could make a Doctor Strange movie without including Clea. While fans think her omission is a terrible idea, the President of Marvel is able to justify the decision.
At a recent visit to the set of Doctor Strange, ComicBook.com was given access to an exclusive Q&A with Kevin Feige. One of the participants brought up the exclusion of Clea, and why Rachel McAdams hadn't been cast in the role. Kevin gave this response:
"We wanted a grounded character, we wanted a character that a connection to Strange's life in New York City and in the normal world. Somebody that could be his anchor to the real world. To his presence in the beginning of the film and by the time he encounters that wearing that, somebody who can comment on his transformation as a character. These cast as you all know is shockingly amazing. Rachael, who's finished her role, 99% of it, perfect timing so she can spend time in the Academy Awards now. We've planned it like that. Is great and can bring again, a grounded reality to the character Strange in the beginning of the film and then also she encounters some odd and strange and other worldly things when he encounters her later in the movie, you believe it. You believe that her reactions to what she's seeing. Like say, an astral form of somebody you used to know is an arrogant surgeon. Her reaction is funny but you also you buy it, you believe it."
It's disappointing that we won't get to see Clea in the MCU for some time, but the thought of grounding Doctor Strange only adds to the excitement for the film. Stephen's world is filled with magic, something that we can't understand, so giving him a link to reality can only assist in his relatability as a character.
Doctor Strange is set to release in US theaters on November 4, 2016.
For more news on Doctor Strange, as well as the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, check out the Marvel Homepage at ComicBook.com!