Joaquin Phoenix, the Oscar nominee often tipped as one of the world's greatest actors following stellar turns in Gladiator, The Master, and Her, is in talks to star in Doctor Strange. Until now, Benedict Cumberbatch and Jared Leto were mostly strongly linked to the role though, according to Deadline, Marvel only has eyes for Phoenix.

Joaquin PhoenixJoaquin Phoenix turned in a strong performance for 'Her'

The studio has been teasing references to the Doctor for months now, most notably in the mega-hit Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Scott Derrickson is directing a script from Jon Spaihts, though the first draft was penned by Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer. 

Doctor Strange dates back to the early 1960s. Created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko, the character is a neurosurgeon who becomes Sorcerer Supreme, protecting the Earth against magical threats with powers including sorcery and mysticism. Oh, and he's a martial artist.

As Mike Fleming Jr notes, "...when you see his work in films from The Master to Her, it's hard to find many leading men who do it better and commit to character the way he does."

Joaquin Phoenix Walk the LinePhoenix in 'Walk the Line'

Phoenix will most likely be in with another shot at the Oscar for Best Actor with Paul Thomas Anderson's Inherent Vice, which opens at the New York Film Festival later this year. Phoenix plays Larry "Doc" Spotello, a drug-fuelled L.A detective investigating the disappearance of a former girlfriend.