Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness star Elizabeth Olsen reveals why she thought Avengers: Endgame would be the MCU’s first flop. After an end-credits tease in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Olsen made her franchise debut as Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch in Avengers: Age of Ultron and went on to reprise the role a number of times in further MCU installments: Captain America: Civil War; Avengers: Infinity War; and Avengers: Endgame. Wanda was then granted her own series, the Emmy-winning Disney+ show WandaVision, which saw the Sokovian hero altering reality as she processed the loss of Vision in Infinity War. Now, Scarlet Witch returns to the big screen in Sam Raimi’s Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, in which she joins the titular sorcerer on his surreal travels across dimensions. Since her debut in 2015, Wanda has proven to be one of the most popular and complex heroes in the MCU, with her journey through grief to discovering her true power really resonating with audiences. Olsen has also garnered widespread acclaim for her performance as Scarlet Witch, including earning both Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for WandaVision, the first actor to get such attention for an MCU character. And, since all of Olsen’s cinematic appearances as the character have been in big Marvel team-up movies, each of her Wanda performances feature in the top 25 highest-grossing movies of all time.
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However, despite the unparalleled success of her character’s films, Olsen always thinks that the latest Marvel movie is going to be “[the MCU’s] first flop,” including the monstrously lucrative Avengers: Endgame. While promoting Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, the actor reveals that this recurring feeling is the reason why she doesn’t “watch these Marvel movies at a premiere anymore. It was amazing to have [Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness] premiere in front of fans… I didn’t watch it, I haven’t seen it… I do watch myself, I just decided I can’t watch these Marvel movies at a premiere anymore… I just, every time I just watch it and I look around me and I’m like “Well, it’s our first flop,” like every time. I just think “It’s our first flop.” […] I saw Avengers: Endgame and I looked around me and I said, “Is this our first flop?” And so I just decided that I don’t want to put myself through that experience again. Avengers: Endgame became the highest-grossing movie ever up to that point, and is currently sitting comfortably at #2, this is certainly an unexpected admission from Olsen. But, although she doesn’t elaborate on what specifically causes her to believe that each new Marvel movie will be a bomb, the fact that this feeling comes after looking around at the audience suggests it has to do with the crowd’s initial reactions. As Marvel films are known for eliciting excitable cheers in movie theaters, it seems possible that this is the kind of benchmark Olsen is measuring each film’s reception on.
Marvel devotees will no doubt be surprised by Olsen’s Endgame confession. The success that the MCU has consistently enjoyed could make it difficult for others to appreciate why she thinks the worst of each new installment, but the audience at the premiere is hardly a group of hardcore fans, and their reactions might not be the most reassuring. But, as the Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness projections indicate, Olsen shouldn’t have much to worry about with her latest Marvel movie.