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Is Rachel McAdams Really Absent From Latest Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness Trailer?

"Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" will be the first feature-length MCU project to release since "Spider-Man: No Way Home," a box office behemoth that quickly surged to become the fourth highest-grossing movie of all time when it was released late last year. Given the prominent role Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) played in that film, hype around his latest solo outing has reached a full boil. With Sam Raimi in the director's chair, expectations have only been heightened, since the filmmaker is responsible for the original "Spider-Man" trilogy of the early 2000s, which is still considered by many to be a high-water mark of the superhero genre.

However, a blink-and-you'll-miss-it detail from the latest TV spot for the upcoming movie has some fans nervous that the film may not be everything they're hoping for. Multiple characters from the first "Doctor Strange" have been slated to return for the sequel — including Strange's erstwhile romantic interest, fellow surgeon Christine Palmer, played by Rachel McAdams. But in the latest trailer, a perplexing omission is causing concern that McAdams's character, who appeared in previous teasers, might have been cut from "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness." 

Rachel McAdams has vanished in latest Doctor Strange trailer, but what that means is unclear

Fans wondering if they missed Rachel McAdams in the latest teaser for "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" aren't the victims of a memory wipe spell from the Sorcerer Supreme. The actor isn't there in a new 30-second TV spot, despite being present in the same footage shown in an earlier trailer, and in fact, she seems to have been edited out of the frame.

In the full-length trailer, which was released in mid-February, there's a shot around the one-minute mark that shows Strange standing in a doorway alongside Christine Palmer and America Chavez (Xochitl Gomez). But eagle-eyed fans have been left scratching their heads after noticing that despite showing that same clip, Palmer is missing from the shot, though Chavez remains undisturbed.

Though the removal of McAdams is likely to induce panic among fans who loved her portrayal of Palmer in the first "Doctor Strange," there are some possible explanations for the omission that may leave room for hope that she'll return in the sequel. Late last year, "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" underwent significant reshoots, meaning story beats may have changed and given Palmer different places to be in the finished film. Additionally, MCU movies are notorious for their byzantine filming practices, even shooting actors one at a time before compiling the footage into a full scene, an experience Brie Larson reported having when filming for "Avengers: Endgame" (via Inquirer). That means the "Doctor Strange" trailer without McAdams may be from a different stage of production than the one with her in it. 

Plus, we've dealt with intentional trailer fakeouts before, such as the Hulk appearing in the "Avengers: Infinity War" trailer during the battle of Wakanda. All in all, it's probably too early to call it curtains for Christine Palmer, but we won't know for sure until "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" hits theaters.