Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is set to hit theaters this weekend, and the films initial reviews are pretty much a mixed bag with some highlighting Sam Raimi‘s horror skills and others revealing Marvel Studios was heavy handed with cameos. The Doctor Strange sequel is set to hit theaters worldwide except for in a few market places. Saudi Arabia banned the film for its inclusion of LGBTQ characters due to a scene featuring Xochitl Gomez‘s America Chavez, and some trolls on the internet attacked the actress in numerous tweets and posts. Now, Gomez’s costar Benedict Wong is speaking out in support.

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“It’s not okay. It’s not okay. We have to all collectively understand that… She auditioned aged 13, and she joined us aged 14, one of the youngest actors, to join the MCU of a film of that magnitude. You know, she’s just a young girl playing her role and full praise for that,” Wong told Variety. “There’s a real level of shame for all those trolls that are cowards not to actually put their face [out there], and they should feel a deep shame of what they’re doing,” Wong added. “Let’s all just play nice. Let’s all just enjoy what we are representing. It’s sad that fans in that country won’t get to see this. But all we are doing is radiating representation, voicing the voiceless. And that’s all that we can do — represent people so that they can be seen.”

Victoria Alonso who is President, Physical and Post Production, Visual Effects, and Animation Production at Marvel Studios recently recalled how they landed on their America Chavez. “We went through a very extensive search process with the Sarah Finn Company and her team, and after meeting with hundreds and hundreds of young women, we landed on Xochitl – who was the best choice for the character,” Alonso revealed. “We were thrilled to have found someone who could embody the character with a fresh look at who America Chavez could be, and who could stand up in performance alongside the likes of Benedict Cumberbatch, Benedict Wong, and Elizabeth Olsen. With Xochitl, there was a cheekiness about her. There was a spark in her eye. We saw the defiance of America Chavez in her.”

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Marvel Studios describes Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness as follows: “To restore a world where everything is changing, Strange seeks help from his ally Wong, the Sorcerer Supreme, and the Avengers’ most powerful Scarlet Witch, Wanda. But a terrible threat looms over humanity and the entire universe that no longer can be done by their power alone. Even more surprising, the greatest threat in the universe looks exactly like Doctor Strange.” ?

The film is directed by the legendary Sam Rami and will star Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange, Benedict Wong as Wong, Rachel McAdams as Christine Palmer, Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff/ Scarlet Witch, Patrick Stewart as Professor Charles Xavier, Xochitl Gomez as America Chavez and Chiwetel Ejiofor as Baron Mordo. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is set to hit theaters on May 5th, 2022!

What do you think about the situation? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below or by hitting up our writer @NateBrail on Twitter!