New interview for the Toronto Sun on his latest projects

The Toronto Sun just published a new interview with Benedict about his latest film projects! Check it out below:

Benedict Cumberbatch talks The Mauritanian, The Courier and Doctor Strange 2

By Mark Daniell

There’s no point in asking Benedict Cumberbatch about Doctor Strange 2Spider-Man: No Way Home or really anything to do with the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

“I can’t believe, still, that after playing Sherlock (Holmes) and Khan (Noonien Singh in Star Trek Into Darkness) and Strange, that people still think I’m going to give insight,” he says laughing down the line from London. “I’m never going to give insight into any of this stuff.”

All he’ll say about his upcoming return as the Master of the Mystic Arts is that he’ll be back.

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Past Letters Live readings to be streamed for ‘The Shows Must Go On’ series

On the next three Mondays, several performances, including Benedict’s, will be streamed on YouTube on behalf of the WOW Foundation and Choose Love. Read more:

The Shows Must Go On series will return from Monday to present a variety of streamed performances.

From 8 March, the channel will work with Letters Live to present a series of readings on its YouTube channel for seven days, free of charge. All donations will be going to The WOW Foundation, which runs the global movement that is WOW – Women of the World Festivals.

The streamed shows will feature women such as Olivia Colman, Adwoa Aboah, Gillian Anderson, Rose McGowan, Daisy Ridley and Caitlin Moran reading letters by women, about women and to women.

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Benedict to star in remake of Hitchcock thriller for TV ‘The 39 Steps’

Another project by SunnyMarch has just been announced. Besides being the star and the executive producer of the new series, Benedict will be reuniting with Patrick Melrose director Edward Berger. Read more below:

EXCLUSIVE: Benedict Cumberbatch will star in the Anonymous Content limited series update of the classic thriller The 39 Steps. Series is created by The Revenant scribe Mark L. Smith and directed by Edward Berger. Berger teamed previously with Cumberbatch in Patrick Melrose, and was a director and EP of the just completed Showtime limited series Your Honor.

Anonymous Content takes the limited series to networks and streaming platforms immediately.

Anonymous Content, Chapter One Pictures and SunnyMarch are producing the limited series inspired by John Buchan’s novel, which was turned into the 1935 film classic by Alfred Hitchcock. Cumberbatch is set to star, Berger to direct, and the scripts are by Smith, who most recently scripted the George Clooney-directed The Midnight Sky.

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“The Mauritanian” has been selected for the 2021 Berlinale

The Berlin Film Festival has announced the official line-up for its 71st edition – set to take place from March 1–5 (industry events) and then June 9–20 (film presentations) – and the great news is that The Mauritanian has been selected for its Berlinale Special category (out of competition)!!

The detailed programme for the event isn’t available yet, but we’ll let you know when that happens and update this post with more information.

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Benedict reveals he was sick with flu during ‘The Mauritanian’ shooting

In an interview to USA Today, he also spoke about meeting the real Lt. Colonel Stewart Couch and getting his accent right. Read more below:

A pivotal scene in “The Mauritanian” places the drama’s two biggest stars – Benedict Cumberbatch and Jodie Foster – head to head as opposing lawyers meeting unofficially. It’s a legal version of Al Pacino’s cop meeting Robert De Niro’s robber in “Heat,” set in the surreal location of a gift shop near Cuba’s notorious Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp.

It was Foster’s first scene and first day on the set in Cape Town, South Africa, which effectively stood in for the incongruent Caribbean paradise that surrounds Gitmo. But it was Cumberbatch who struggled as cameras rolled.

“I was getting sick in between takes,” Cumberbatch remembers, calling from a car somewhere outside of London. The 44-year-old “Doctor Strange” star thinks he was in the final stages of a terrible flu he picked up on the flight to South Africa. Or something. “I was really ill, I think it was just a really severe flu. But it was really nasty. I hadn’t been that ill for quite a long time. Like maybe once in my life. Horrible.”

In the pre-COVID era, Cumberbatch was intent on battling forth. “The Mauritanian” (in theaters Friday, on demand March 2) represented a five-year quest to bring Mohamedou Ould Slahi’s remarkable story to the screen.

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Benedict helps launch Red Nose Day 2021

Benedict, alongside Dame Judi Dench Joe Lycett, Mo Gilligan, Shappi Khorsandi, Sir Lenny Henry and others, appears in a video titled “Funny is Power” to lauch this year’s Red Nose Day, which will take place on Friday March 19. Watch it below:

He says:

I think laughter is a panacea, it’s always been a national medicine. I think people reached out for it in lockdown. It was a comedy rather than a tragedy that people first went for.

I think it’s a way of getting through life’s difficulties and also, when you make light of something often, then it can just release the tension enough to breathe, to just have a moments respite from it; and that relief is much needed right now. There’s a reason why this is called Comic Relief.

Check out some screencaptures from the video, as well as the photoshoot for the campaign:

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First trailer and poster for “The Courier” are finally here!

This is NOT a drill, people!

The very first trailer for The Courier (formerly Ironbark) is finally among us!! And, also, the very first poster! Check them out below:

And if you’d like some screencaps, we got you:

Will Sharpe talks “Louis Wain” and Benedict with Empire magazine

The March 2021 edition of Empire UK magazine features a short interview with director Will Sharpe on The Electrical Life of Louis Wain in which he talks a little about Benedict. Check it out below:

The Electrical Life of Louis Wain.

The year’s battiest biopic? This may well be it.

On the surface, it all sounds quite traditional: Benedict Cumberbatch and Claire Foy starring in a biopic of a renowned British artist. But with an idiosyncratic title, and Will Sharpe – the creator of Channel 4’s bleak comedy Flowers – as director, The Electrical Life of Louis Wain should be anything but. Wain, played by Cumberbatch (“He’s always on and always delivers, which is exciting to watch”, says Sharpe), was a cat-obsessed oddball renowned for his fantastical, psychedelic paintings of anthropomorphised feline figures, and who suffered personal tragedy and significant success across his surprisingly long life in the late 1800s and early 1900s. What’s more, he may have had schizophrenia, possibly brought on by parasites found in, er, cat shit.

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‘The Courier’ gets date release and new stills

Great news! Alter months of wait and several delays, Lionsgate has finally announced a release date for The Courier (formerly known as Ironbark). The movie is now set to hit the UK cinemas on March 19.

Plus, new stills have been released, which you can see on our photo gallery in UHQ:

The trailer should be out very soon, so fingers crossed!

Benedict and “The Mauritanian” team talk with Variety

Yesterday, Variety held an exclusive screening of The Mauritanian followed by a Q&A with the main cast and director Kevin Macdonald. Now, the 42-minutes-long talk is available for all to watch! Check it out below:

Cast, Director of ‘The Mauritanian’ Examine Themes Behind the Film: ‘It’s Beyond His Innocence or His Guilty’

By Natalie Oganesyan

The cast and director of “The Mauritanian,” based on a true story of the torture and trial of a suspected 9/11 terrorist, want audiences to take away lessons of empathy, love and justice from the film.

Academy Award-winning director Kevin Macdonald, along with stars Jodie Foster, Benedict Cumberbatch, Shailene Woodley and Tahar Rahim joined Variety film awards editor Clayton Davis in the Variety Streaming Room to discuss the difficulties of and preparation required to recount the gargantuan story of Mohamedou (Rahim), a man who unwittingly got involved with al-Qaida and was subsequently tortured at Guantanamo Bay without trial for his alleged involvement in 9/11.

For Macdonald, one of the challenges of the film was weaving the separate storylines of an ensemble cast — Mohamedou, his defense (Woodley and Foster) and military prosecutor’s (Cumberbatch) — into one cohesive story.

“How do you take these disparate stories and weave them together in a way that is compelling … and where you don’t feel like these are three completely disconnected stories,” Macdonald said.

The stars reflected on the complications of portraying real people, which they surmounted by researching the case and meeting with their respective characters. “With Nancy, you do feel that responsibility to make sure that you honor not just who she is, but her mission,” said Foster of her character Nancy Hollander, Mohamedou’s defense attorney who emphasizes the importance of the rule of law throughout the pic.

The panelists said a main driver of the film is the intellectual themes behind the story, such as the universality of humanity, the necessity of protecting civil liberties and the overwhelming power of fear and bias.

“When we look at fear, it’s easy to look at it from a very mental-based place, but I think, for [Teri,] she had a deep emotional fear, a fear of isolation, a fear of feeling neglected, a fear of being kicked out of society, in a way, because what she wants to do is right, but then she gets in her head about are the decisions she’s making right?” Woodley said of her character Teri Duncan, who is an amalgamation of the defense behind the case. “What does right and wrong even mean?”

Cumberbatch, who plays Lt. Stuart Couch, said he was attracted to the role because of the journey his character takes in unraveling the institutional issues that plague the U.S. military, particularly at Guantanamo.

“From wanting blood and then being brought to a realization that everything that he founds his belief on, from the law to the military to Christianity, and not necessarily in that order, was being undone by the actions at Guantanamo, and he couldn’t, with any conviction, square his conscious, and so he stepped away, he did that extraordinary thing of giving up the case,” Cumberbatch said.

Rahim, who plays the titular role, said his main obstacle was getting into the mental space required to depict a torture victim. To help with the reality of the scenes, he asked Macdonald to make his cell as cold as possible and be put in shackles. “It was tough. Because how could I possibly know what it is to be tortured like this?”

For Macdonald, the film serves as a lens through which audiences can understand the multiple facets of humanity beyond the realms of guilt or innocence.

“The Muslim man accused of terror is probably the least loved person in the world and the least understood person, and I think … it’s that emotional connection,” Macdonald said. “It’s a film about humanity and about why are we doing this to other human beings? What possible excuse can there be? And it’s beyond his innocence or his guilt.”

Source: Variety