If you know who Baron Mordo is, then you know he isn’t on the best of terms with Doctor Strange. The characters are worse off than frenemies since the two sorcerers have been butting heads (and spells) for decades. But, when Doctor Strange hits theaters, fans will see a different side of the pair. According to Chiwetel Ejiofor, Mordo acts as Stephen Strange’s advocate and tutor in the film.
During a recent set visit to Doctor Strange, ComicBook.com’s Lucas Siegel got a chance to talk with Chiwel about his character Karl Mordo. The British actor confessed Mordo’s relationship with Doctor Strange is complicated but one that the sorcerer initiates.
“He [Mordo] becomes one of the first real allies to Strange, and he wants to bring him into this community, this very special knit community, and see if Strange can fit in and create a home for him there,” Ejiofor said.
“Mordo is the first really to recognize the potential in Strange and so becomes his primary advocate initially. Their relationship is complicated. In some ways they're quite similar, but that lends itself to tensions between them. Overall, he is the tutor that really brings him in.”
When Ejiofor was asked to describe his character’s relationship with Stephen Strange, the actor said the hero was a pupil to Mordo.
“Strange is somebody that is trying to find out what all of these things are and to find the secrets of this place. I think that develops into something deeper and richer - and yes - there is a camaraderie, but it's also a mutual respect as they gain an understanding of each other,’ Ejiofor said.
But, if you asked Ejiofor whether Mordo was ever jealous of Stephen Strange, then the answer would be no. The actor said he didn’t see Mordo as an “envious or jealous entity” because he’s purer that that.
“What [Kamar-Tag] means to Mordo is so strong and his defense of it [and the Ancient One] is so deep....that he would react to any perceived threat. But it wouldn't come from a place of envy,” Ejiofor explained. Instead, the defensive posturing would come from Mordo’s protectiveness and loyalty.
Of course, the actor’s thoughts may surprise some. Doctor Strange has often portrayed Baron Mordo as a jealous character who covets Doctor Strange’s gifts. His envy is what drives him to betray the Ancient One and turn to the dark arts of Dormammu, making him a prime enemy of Doctor Strange.
Naturally, fans are wondering whether Mordo will even act as a villian in Doctor Strange given his relationship with Stephen Strange, but director Scott Derrickson has addressed those fears. In an interview with ComicBook.com, he said the relationship between Mordo and Stephen evolves.
“There's definitely an evolution in the relationship," Derrickson said. "I didn't want to do what the comics did and start off with Mordo just being and arch nemesis and a bad guy straight from the beginning...They're both men of idea, men of principles, men of beliefs and those are the kind of antagonists I enjoy watching, so we tried to make a movie with those kind of antagonists.
Doctor Strange will hit theaters on November 4 2016.