Most of you will remember Rachel McAdams as a convincing mean girl, though she couldn’t be sweeter in person. She’s also well-remembered for her role in The Notebook. Now, she’s part of the MCU in Marvel’s Doctor Strange, a partnership that many of us dream about and is sure to boost her celebrity status, making her more recognizable as a serious actress.
“It was everything I had hoped for and more, really,” McAdams said about becoming part of the MCU. “I assumed I would be working with the crème de la crème, really, and I was. So, it was just great to be in such great hands. Everything was just so well done, so beautifully thought through, and well-crafted. And they didn’t even make me pretend that much with green screen,” she laughs.
Unlike her co-star, Benedict Cumberbatch who plays the titular role in the film, Rachel McAdams had seen at least a rough cut of the film before it’s world premier in LA on October 20th.
“I’ve seen an early cut of the film. I think the effects were about halfway done, but they were still mind blowing,” she told us. We really couldn’t agree more, and it seems to be the consensus among those who were able to screen the film early as we did. “It was so, so great – so trippy. I loved how trippy it was!”
McAdams made sure to educate herself for the role as Christine Palmer by reading comic books. Palmer’s role in the film is that of a surgeon and colleague of Doctor Strange, with hints of a past romantic relationship. In the comic books, Christine Palmer becomes the third Night Nurse, though in this origin film, there is no hint of that moniker.
“I hadn’t read the Dr. Strange comics growing up,” McAdams confesses. “I was kind of reading Judy Blume and stuff like that. But I’ve since educated myself. I think the Dr. Strange ones are so different from the other comics, which is nice. I mean, I love the movies, but I hadn’t read a lot of the comics.”
McAdams’ character isn’t wearing Capes of Levitation nor does she acquire her own relic or mystic powers, so research for her role was quite different from that of her co-stars.
Click below to hear Rachel McAdams talk about her biggest fears and which book inspired her!
“No!” she laughs. “You couldn’t touch that thing. Sacred cloak. No, I just got to look at it.”
Rachel McAdams plays a very close friend and confidant to Doctor Stephen Strange, so there are parts of the film during which her character is intensely emotional and vulnerable. We asked her from where she drew in her life or experience to work through the scenes.
“I do think having a mother as a nurse who’s very – she’s so compassionate and she really, unfortunately, would take her work home with her sometimes, and I think Christine’s more that kind of character. I kind of grew up with that a little bit and have great admiration for people who do that for a living and who are real empaths. So I suppose I drew from my mom a bit.”
“She did IV therapy,” McAdams told us. “If she would miss someone’s vein, she just beat herself up, you know, so bad. So, I guess it was a little bit personal that way. But also, you know, Benedict is such an extraordinary actor that you just have to be present with him and it all kind of falls into place. I mean, we did a lot of crying together,” she said laughing. “We cried one day for eight hours straight, every single take. I’ve never been able to do that before. With him – he’s so emotionally available and present that I’d look at him and I’d start crying. He’d look at me we’d – it was just like water works all day long. We both had these incredible headaches at the end of the day. And I was like, ‘Well we’re dehydrated.’ So yeah, so I really have to you know give kudos to him for that.”
McAdams was very transparent in her admiration for her co-star, and was equally so with regards to the film’s director, Scott Derrickson.
“I met with Scott and he was just so incredibly passionate and, you know, a self-proclaimed comic geek,” she said. “And I think that’s who you want at the helm of something like this. It was so personal for him. I just knew he was the right guy for it and that I’d be great hands, and that Marvel would be so supportive, as well. I was just excited at the possibilities, yeah.”
Now that Rachel McAdams has wet her feet in the magical pool that is the MCU, we wondered how she felt about possible future collaborations with Marvel and what her wish would be for the evolution of her character.
“Oh, I want my own cloak. I haven’t really thought about it because it’s, you know, really is sort of to be determined. I think the success of the film determines that. And so, we’ll see. I mean, I loved being a part of it so, of course, I would be more than happy to go forward with it. But you know, who knows?”
Though it might seem like a cliche question, we had to ask Rachel about the superpower that she would most want. Her answer to this was unlike any we’ve heard before, but so absolutely perfect!
Click below to hear Rachel McAdams talk about the superpower she’d most want and why!
You can see Rachel McAdams and Dr. Christine Palmer in Marvel’s Doctor Strange in theaters November 4.