"Benedict is this sort of beautiful, exotic creature. He’s never going to play an ordinary man, ‘cause he couldn’t. That’s not what he’s like, but he will tell the stories of great men."Benedict Timothy Carlton Cumberbatch
(London, 1976) is a British stage, film, television, and voice actor with an awesome name
. Despite being in the entertainment business for ten years, he only recently skyrocketed into international stardom with his BAFTA, Emmy and Golden Globe nominated portrayal of Sherlock Holmes
. Now amongst the most sought-after people in showbiz, he has been hailed as one of the best actors of his generation.
Cumberbatch is well known for his ridiculously perfect cheekbones, remarkable intellect, and velvet-smooth baritone voice. The Times
has described his voice as a "jaguar hiding in a cello", and the Jaguar marketing team agrees with this
An unlikely sex symbol, he landed the #1 spot on The Sun's
"Sexiest Man Alive" list two years in a row in 2012 and 2013 (apparently he "hadn't taken anything less seriously in all his life
") by a landslide thanks to his devoted fanbase. He was also hailed by Empire Magazine's
50, 000 international readers as "World's Sexiest Actor" in 2013. It looks like brainy is the new sexy after all!His notable works include:
- Atonement as Paul Marshall, an Upper-Class Twit and child rapist.
- Starter For 10 as Patrick Watts, an Upper-Class Wit and University Challenge team captain.
- Sherlock as Sherlock Holmes.
- To the Ends of the Earth as Upper-Class Twit Edmund Talbot.
- Hawking as Stephen Hawking.
- Seems to be the go-to guy for Stephen Hawking. He also did Professor Hawking's narration on a documentary.
- The Last Enemy as Stephen Ezard, a socially inept mathematician with OCD.
- Nathan Barley as Robin.
- Amazing Grace as William Pitt.
- The Other Boleyn Girl as William Carey (Scarlett Johansson's husband.)
- Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy as Peter Guillam.
- War Horse as Major Jamie Stewart.
- The Hobbit as the voice and motion capture of the dragon Smaug, as well as the Necromancer (reuniting with Sherlock co-star Martin Freeman).
- Cabin Pressure as Captain Martin Crieff, an airline pilot.
- Big Finish Doctor Who as "Thing 2".
- Third Star as James Kimberly Griffith, a dying man who makes one final journey.
- Star Trek Into Darkness as John Harrison. A.K.A. Khan Noonien Singh.
- The Fifth Estate as Julian Assange
- Fortysomething as Rory Slippery.
- Danny Boyle's stage adaptation of Frankenstein, alternating between Victor and the Monster.
- Parade's End as Christopher Tietjens, based on Ford Madox Ford's novel.
Exhibits examples of:
- Badass Baritone/Evil Sounds Deep: His voice is quite deep, to say the least.
- Covers Always Lie: The DVD of the Mini Series To The Ends Of The Earth pushed Benedict (who was the star) off of the cover in favor of Sam Neill, even though he plays a very minor character.
- Description Porn: If he is to write an article, chances are it will end up having this. Just take a look at the recount of his diving trip, or his thoughts on classical music.
- Dyeing for Your Art:
- As previously mentioned, he's naturally a ginger, but dyes his hair dark brown for most of his roles (including Hawking), black for roles like Sherlock and Harrison, and a sort of dishwater-blonde for Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.
- For Third Star he opted to lose a ton of weight instead of shaving his head (which he was growing out for Sherlock) in order to look like a sickly and emaciated cancer patient. He kept the appearance for Sherlock Holmes, who is known for prioritizing work over food.
- Conversely, for Star Trek Into Darkness he worked out daily and went up two suit sizes.
- Despite having a wig, he still dyed his hair platinum blond to portray Julian Assange in The Fifth Estate. He also wore contact lenses and false teeth for the film.
- Fan Nickname: He has loads of nicknames. Some given by the press, others by fans, and even more from his own friends. Tumblr has a particular fondness for "Baritone Gingerbatch". A notable one is Bandersnatch Cumberbund, which was from an article that unfortunately could not spell his name correctly and, simultaneously, had many fans poking lighthearted fun at his difficult name.
- And the priceless one given to him by his schoolmate, which he disclosed on Alan Carr's talkshow: Bendy-dick Cum-on-my-baps.
- "Butawhiteguy Cantbekhan" gained some popularity even among fans in regards to the Into Darkness whitewashing (which no one really blamed on him).
- Male Frontal Nudity: The National Theatre's 2011 production of Frankenstein had Benedict Cumberbatch or Jonny Lee Miller (depending on the night) spending about 20 minutes completely nude as the Monster, as he came to life and learned how to move, walk etc.
- Preppy Name: Just look at his full name!
- Promoted Fanboy: Averted — he wanted to play the Master in Big Finish Doctor Who, but Show Runner Nicholas Briggs had to turn him down because fans would just associate him with Sherlock too much.
- Mean Character, Nice Actor: His version of Sherlock Holmes describes himself as a "high-functioning sociopath" and shows concern for very few people, and that's not even mentioning his character in Star Trek Into Darkness; the man behind the roles is eloquent and charming. MTV even made a video entitled Why is Benedict Cumberbatch so Charming? to prove the point. The press usually describe him as "relentlessly polite" and "both a thinker and a talker".
- Running Gag: During promotion for The Hobbit, interviewers would bring up his voice work for Smaug, and Benedict would interject that he also did the motion-capture as well.
- Sir Swears-a-Lot: Surprisingly.
- Serkis Folk: Provides motion capture and the voice for Smaug and the Necromancer in Peter Jackson's The Hobbit.
- Star-Making Role: Sherlock truly made him a star on both sides of the Atlantic, and spring-boarded him into a film career.
- Upper-Class Twit: Very good at getting cast as these, although lately he's been breaking away from that to avoid typecasting.