Tilda Swinton is in talks to star as The Ancient One, a male role, in forthcoming Marvel superhero fantasy Doctor Strange.

The move is being hailed as yet another example of comic book movies embracing diversification.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Doctor Strange is to star Benedict Cumberbatch as the Sorcerer Supreme. 

The Ancient One is a mystical mentor to Strange, who is of Tibetan extraction and over 500 years old. His striking gifts include astral projection, teleportation and the ability to create energy blasts.

Doctor Strange is due in cinemas for on November 4, 2016. It will be Cumberbatch’s debut lead role in a big budget Hollywood production.

Joaquin Phoenix and Jared Leto were also said to have been considered for the part.