|Marvel Cinematic Universe character|
|First appearance||Doctor Strange (2016)|
|Portrayed by||Benedict Wong|
|Affiliation||Masters of the Mystic Arts|
Wong is a fictional character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) film franchise, based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name and portrayed by Benedict Wong. In the franchise, Wong is depicted as Dr. Stephen Strange's friend and fellow sorcerer, being a member of the Masters of the Mystic Arts.
As of 2021[update], Wong has appeared in the films Doctor Strange (2016), Avengers: Infinity War (2018), Avengers: Endgame (2019), and Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021), as well as the Disney+ series What If...? (2021), and will return in the films Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021) and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022).
Concept and creation
The character is depicted in Marvel Comics as Doctor Strange's Asian, "tea-making manservant", a racial stereotype that Doctor Strange (2016) director Scott Derrickson did not want in the film, and so the character was not included in the film's script. After the non-Asian actress Tilda Swinton was cast as the other significant Asian character from the Doctor Strange comics, the Ancient One, which was also done to avoid the comics' racial stereotypes, Derrickson felt obligated to find a way to include Wong in the film. The character as he ultimately appears is "completely subverted as a character and reworked into something that didn't fall into any of the stereotypes of the comics", which Derrickson was pleased gave an Asian character "a strong presence in the movie". Actor Wong was also pleased with the changes made to the character, and described him as "a drill sergeant to Kamar-Taj" rather than a manservant. He does not practice martial arts in the film, avoiding another racial stereotype. Derrickson added that Wong would have "a strong presence in the Marvel Cinematic Universe" moving forward.
- Wong debuts in Doctor Strange (2016).
- Wong returns in Avengers: Infinity War (2018), and its sequel, Avengers: Endgame (2019).
- Wong returns in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021), where he fights the Abomination. Benedict Wong was excited "to be sat at a table of Asian excellence" amongst the film's cast.
- Alternate versions of Wong appears in the What If...? episodes "What If... Doctor Strange Lost His Heart Instead of His Hands?" and "What If... Zombies?!".
- Wong will return in Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021) and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022).
Fictional character biography
Mentor to Strange
Prior to 2016, Wong becomes the Sanctum Santorum's librarian after the previous one was beheaded by Kaecilius. In 2016, he meets Dr. Stephen Strange while on the latter's journey to fix his hands. A few months later in 2017, he is killed while defending the Hong Kong Sanctum, but is revived by Strange using the Time Stone. After defeating Kaecilius and Dormammu, Strange takes residence in the New York Sanctum and continues his studies with Wong.
Infinity War and aftermath
In 2018, Bruce Banner crash-lands in the Sanctum Santorum and warns Wong and Strange about Thanos's plan to destroy half of all life in the universe, recruiting Tony Stark. Ebony Maw and Cull Obsidian then arrive in New York and battle Wong, Strange, Stark, and Peter Parker, with Wong defeating Cull Obsidian by sending him through a portal. With Strange kidnapped by Ebony May, Wong stays behind to guard the Sanctum.
In 2023, Strange is revived, and calls in Wong to get the other sorcerers, the restored Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy, the Ravagers, and the armies of Wakanda and Asgard to defeat an alternate Thanos's army. Following the battle, Wong attends Stark's funeral alongside Strange. Some time later, in an underground fight club, Wong battles Abomination, defeating him in combat by creating a portal through which Abomination punches himself in the head. Wong and Abomination then leave together.
Later, Wong appears before Shang-Chi and his best friend, Katy, in a restaurant, and has them accompany him to the Sanctum Santorum, where he learns the Ten Rings are sending out a beacon, speaking with Banner and Carol Danvers via hologram.
Multiverse of Madness
In 2024, Wong plans to go on vacation. Before leaving, he warns Strange of the catastrophes caused by a dangerous spell to undo Parker's identity being exposed by Mysterio. Wong leaves, and Strange ignoring Wong's warnings begins performing the spell to Parker which goes awry resulting in the Multiverse breaking open.
- In "What If... Doctor Strange Lost His Heart Instead of His Hands?", Wong opposes Stephen Strange's several attempts to save his girlfriend, Dr. Christine Palmer. Despite these efforts, Strange's universe-destroying paradox occurs, and Wong dies.
- In "What If... Zombies?!", zombified versions of Wong, Strange, and Tony Stark devour and infect Ebony Maw and Cull Obsidian. They attempt to eat Bruce Banner, but they are killed by Hope van Dyne.
Shania Russell of /Film called Wong "the [MCU]'s most underrated wonder". Wong's appearances in Shang-Chi, No Way Home, and Multiverse of Madness has drawn comparison between him and Phil Coulson. Wong was viewed as a highlight of the first Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer.
- Strauss, Bob (September 9, 2016). "How Benedict Cumberbatch's 'Doctor Strange' will bend minds". Los Angeles Daily News. Archived from the original on September 13, 2016. Retrieved September 13, 2016.
- Mellor, Louisa (June 27, 2016). "Exclusive: Benedict Wong on new direction of his Doctor Strange role". Den of Geek. Archived from the original on June 27, 2016. Retrieved June 27, 2016.
- "Disney's Live-Action Casting Controversies". E! Online. July 15, 2019. Archived from the original on April 21, 2021. Retrieved April 21, 2021.
- Mueller, Matthew (October 21, 2016). "Benedict Wong Confirmed For Avengers Infinity War". ComicBook.com. Archived from the original on October 22, 2016. Retrieved October 22, 2016.
- Dumaraog, Ana (September 21, 2018). "Avengers 4 Reshoots: Chris Hemsworth Headed to Set, Benedict Wong Already There". Screen Rant. Archived from the original on October 19, 2020. Retrieved October 19, 2020.
- Bonaime, Ross (June 24, 2021). "New 'Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings' Trailer Gives a Closer Look at Tony Leung As the Real Mandarin". Collider. Archived from the original on June 25, 2021. Retrieved June 24, 2021.
- D Bennett, Tara (July 19, 2021). "Benedict Wong Says Joining Marvel's Shang-Chi is 'To Be Sat At A Table of Asian Excellence'". SyFy Wire. Archived from the original on July 20, 2021.
- Donnelly, Matt (August 23, 2021). "'Spider-Man: No Way Home' Trailer Officially Drops, Multiverse Villains Descend on Tom Holland". Variety. Archived from the original on August 23, 2021. Retrieved August 23, 2021.
- Kit, Borys (December 11, 2018). "Scott Derrickson Returning to Direct 'Doctor Strange' Sequel (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on December 11, 2018. Retrieved December 11, 2018.
- McNary, Dave (December 11, 2018). "'Doctor Strange' Director Scott Derrickson to Return for Sequel". Variety. Archived from the original on December 12, 2018. Retrieved December 12, 2018.
- Tyler, Adrienne (June 6, 2020). "Every Major MCU Character Who Died & Came Back To Life (Before Endgame)". Screen Rant. Retrieved September 1, 2021.
- Dumaraog, Ana (May 1, 2019). "Every Marvel Character At The Funeral In Avengers: Endgame". ScreenRant. Archived from the original on April 6, 2021. Retrieved September 2, 2021.
- Russell, Shania (September 7, 2021). "An Ode To Wong, The One MCU Dude Who Is Just Vibing". Slashfilm. Archived from the original on September 7, 2021. Retrieved September 12, 2021.
- Zachary, Brandon (September 4, 2021). "Shang-Chi Cements Wong as the MCU's New Coulson". CBR. Archived from the original on September 5, 2021. Retrieved September 12, 2021.
- Tyler, Adrienne (September 7, 2021). "How Wong Is Becoming MCU's Phil Coulson Replacement For Phase 4". Screen Rant. Archived from the original on September 7, 2021. Retrieved September 12, 2021.
- Prigge, Matt (August 24, 2021). "People Are Finding The Clearly Overworked Wong To Be The Most Relatable Character In The 'Spider-Man: No Way Home' Trailer". UPROXX. Retrieved September 2, 2021.