The Ancient One's Relationship With Doctor Strange Revealed

One of the key relationships in Doctor Strange will be between Strange and the Ancient One, a master of the mystic arts and Strange's teacher in learning how to master magic. In the comics, the Ancient One was a wizened Tibetan sage but in the new movie Tilda Swinton will play the radically different role.

Swinton spoke to about her character's relationship to Strange and how it evolves throughout the movie. "The Ancient One's really invested in Dr. Strange, it's a very kind of primal relationship," Swinton told

The Ancient One's relationship with Strange initially mirrors that in the comics. "The Ancient One as you know is the master, is the Sorcerer Supreme...Strange comes to learn how to heal himself, and The Ancient One has got the knowledge." In the comics, Strange initially hopes that the Ancient One will simply heal him, but becomes his disciple after stopping a plot against the Ancient One by Baron Mordo.

Although the Ancient One will put Strange through the motions to learn the mystic arts, which has been described as a mix of martial arts and magic, Swinton hints that she has an ulterior motive for wanting Strange to succeed. "It's really important to The Ancient One that Dr. Strange does cut it, because The Ancient One needs a successor, or certainly needs a, you could say a son."

In the Doctor Strange comics, Strange eventually succeeds the Ancient One as the Sorcerer Supreme after the Chthulu-like creature Shuma-Gorath attempts to use the Ancient One's body as a conduit to invade Earth. Strange manages to repel Shuma-Gorath, but at the cost of destroying his mentor's body. Although the Ancient One's body is gone, his spirit returned several times to assist his former student and recently restored Strange as Earth's Sorcerer Supreme after a fierce battle with the vengeful spirit of Daniel Drumm.


Doctor Strange comes out in theaters on November 4.

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